Welcome to the Division of Surgical Oncology

Faculty members in the Department of Surgery’s Division of Surgical Oncology are teachers at the VCU School of Medicine and physicians and researchers at VCU Health. Our surgical oncologists are integrated in and contribute to the clinical care, education and training programs, and basic, translational and clinical research activities of VCU Massey Cancer Center, Richmond’s only National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated cancer center.

Patient Care

Our surgical oncologists are board certified and have expertise and experience that distinguishes them as leaders in the diagnosis and treatment of tumors. They use cutting-edge techniques and the latest technologies to offer the most advanced procedures.

Visit the VCU Health website to learn more about the surgical procedures we offer and the locations of our clinics.

Our surgeons work in multidisciplinary teams at VCU Massey Cancer Center to treat the following disease types:

For patient appointments, please call (804) 628-3111

 

Research and Innovation

Faculty members in our division are research members at VCU Massey Cancer Center and are engaged in basic, translational and clinical cancer research. They are collaborating with laboratory and social and behavioral researchers to investigate new and better treatment options and explore ways to improve the patient care experience. They serve as principal investigators of clinical trials for gastrointestinal cancers, melanoma, breast cancer and immunotherapy. They also conduct basic and translational research on breast cancer biology and immunotherapy.

  • Harry Bear helped Massey Cancer Center pioneer neoadjuvant therapy for breast cancer. Neoadjuvant therapy, which involves pre-operative chemotherapy, hormonal therapy or radiation therapy to shrink tumors before surgery, may improve surgical outcomes or allow patients who were not candidates for surgery to become eligible. He also developed a phase 2 clinical trial at Massey based on his laboratory research that is testing the benefits of adding an experimental immunotherapy combination before standard chemotherapy and surgery for breast cancer patients.

  • Leopoldo Fernandez is leading one of only two hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC) programs in the state of Virginia and is currently studying the outcomes of this therapy on the treatment of advanced abdominal cancers.

  • Amelia Grover was the first in the region to perform robotic thyroidectomies, a thyroid surgery assisted by a robot that is minimally invasive and has a quicker recovery time. She also chairs the American College of Surgeons Committee on Diversity Issues, addressing disparities in health care and the workforce.

  • Brian Kaplan was part of the first team in the world to implant an internal radiation device known as CivaSheet to treat early-stage pancreatic cancer.

  • Kandace McGuire was the first in the region to use a new, FDA-approved device named Magseed™ that guides surgeons in locating and removing breast tumors and is a simpler, more effective alternative to traditional wire localization methods.

  • Giao Phan is leading the first cell-based immunotherapy trial at Massey Cancer Center to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of an adoptive cell-transfer therapy for patients with metastatic melanoma.

Visit the VCU Massey Cancer Center website to learn more about the research our surgeons are conducting

Education and Training

The Division is dedicated to the advancement of education for future and current surgeons and oncologists. Our surgeons teach continuing professional development courses for physicians and other health care professionals to contribute to their medical knowledge and clinical competence, positively impacting health outcomes in our community. We also offer a surgical oncology fellowship program, which provides opportunities for the next generation of surgical oncologists to train in one of the country’s leading cancer centers.

Surgical Oncology Fellowship

From the Chair

[VCUSOM Message from the Dean] - Dean's Message

From the Chair

"Our focus on teamwork, communication, and a multidisciplinary approach is unparalleled, and provides the highest-quality, personalized care—all culminating into better outcomes for patients."

— Harry Bear, M.D., Ph.D., FACS

VCU Health Surgical Oncology

Faculty

Advanced Practice Providers

Anna K Nizinski, NP
Patricia Bragg, NP

Contact Us

Harry Bear, MD, PhD, FACS
Chair, Surgical Oncology
harry.bear@vcuhealth.org

Biliana Ivanova, MBA
Associate Administrator
biliana.ivanova@vcuhealth.org
804-827-1035

Ann Whitaker
Division Manager
ann.whitaker@vcuhealth.org
(804) 828-9322


Office Location

West Hospital
Seventh Floor, West Wing

Mailing Address 
Box 980011
Richmond, Virginia 23298-0011

Phone: (804) 828-9322
Fax: (804) 828-4808
For patient appointments, please call (804) 628-3111.