Substantial advances in oncology research are now taking place that will clearly benefit patients with cancer as we approach the 21st century. These research advances range from those involving molecular biology to results of prospective clinical trials involving multimodality treatments. These advances will produce some fundamental changes that will affect our surgical practice and the expertise we bring to the care of patients with cancer in the next century.
I chose this topic for three reasons. First, multimodality cancer treatment will be used for the vast majority of patients with cancer in the future. This, in turn, will require a profound change in the coordination of cancer treatment by a team of specialists instead of the surgeon alone. Second, I am concerned that some patients with cancer may not have access to optimal surgical care in the future. My experience on the American Board of Surgery as well as conversations
Balch CM. Surgical Oncology in the 21st CenturyPresidential Address. Arch Surg. 1992;127(11):1272-1277. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1992.01420110014004