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Gynecologic Oncology

Cancer Care Northwest is home to three of the region’s top gynecologic oncologists. Our physicians specialize in all treatment types of these diseases, including gynecologic surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy

 Gyencologic oncology is cancer care designed specifically for women with cancers of the reproductive organs.

Women with cancer of the reproductive organs, including the ovaries, cervix, uterus and other reproductive organs, require unique expertise and treatment. In fact, research shows that gynecologic oncologists — surgeons who specialize in treating cancers of the reproductive organs — provide the highest level of surgical care and the best outcomes for women with these cancers. We are home to the only three fellowship-trained gynecologic oncologists in the Inland Northwest, offering the highest level of gynecologic oncology expertise available in the region. 

Gynecologic oncologists are among the most comprehensively trained cancer specialists. Not only are they experts in women’s health and anatomy, they are also skilled surgeons who have intensive training and education in the biology and pathology of female cancers.

Cancer Care Northwest offers comprehensive treatment options for gynecologic cancers, including:

Gynecologic surgery: Our gynecologic oncologists have extensive experience and expertise in the surgical treatment of gynecologic cancers. They are skilled in cutting-edge robotic surgery techniques using the da Vinci Surgical System and other minimally invasive surgical procedures.

Chemotherapy: Our gynecologic oncologists are trained to administer chemotherapy, allowing you to have one physician who directs the care of your cancer throughout the treatment process.

Radiation Oncology: Our gynecologic oncologists work as team with our radiation oncologists to provide advanced forms of radiation therapy, including:

Brachytherapy: Brachytherapy (internal radiation) is used to treat certain types of cervical cancer, vaginal cancer and uterine cancer.  Cancer Care Northwest serves as a regional referral center in the use of brachytherapy, including high-dose rate brachytherapy (HDR), to treat gynecologic cancers.

External beam radiation: This form of radiation therapy uses a machine to aim radiation through the skin to the cancer. 

What is robotic surgery?

 The da Vinci Surgical System is a state-of-the-art surgical system designed to help your doctor perform the most precise and least invasive gynecologic surgery available today used to treat a range of conditions. Through small (less than 1 centimeter) incisions, surgeons using this device can perform with greater control and detail while minimizing pain and risk typically associated with large incision surgeries.

The da Vinci System has been used successfully worldwide in thousands of procedures to date.

How does it work?

The da Vinci Surgical System is designed to provide surgeons with enhanced capabilities, including high-definition 3D vision and a magnified view. Your doctor controls the da Vinci System at a console (pictured above) which translates their hand movements into smaller, more precise movements of tiny instruments inside your body. Though it is often called a “robot,” da Vinci cannot act on its own. Instead, the surgery is performed entirely by your doctor.

Together, da Vinci technology allows your doctor to perform complex procedures through just a few tiny openings. As a result, you may be able to get back to life faster without the usual recovery following major surgery.

What does it treat?

At CCNW, our certified physicians can treat uterine cancer, hyperplasia, cervical cancer and ovarian masses with the da Vinci System. Women with a high risk of ovarian cancer can also have risk reduction surgery.

What are the benefits?

  • The benefits of robotic surgery include: 
  • Shorter and less painful procedure
  • Shorter hospital stay for recovery (1 day versus 4-5 days)
  • Little to no scarring
  • Less risk of infection
  • Less blood loss and potential need for a transfusion
  • A faster return to normal activities
  • Less time between surgery and follow up treatment

As with any surgery, these benefits cannot be guaranteed, as surgery is patient- and procedure-specific.

The Da Vinci uses small incisions (as shown in the image on the right) for minimal scarring and blood loss unlike when a woman receives an open surgery incision for a hysterectomy (as shown on left).

Cancer Care Northwest is home to the regions most experienced fellowship-trained gynecologic oncologists: Melanie Berman, MD; Elizabeth Grosen, MD; and Susannah Mourton, MD.  


Gynecologic oncology is an innovative method of cancer treatment and is constantly changing. We invite you to learn more by visiting the following trusted site: