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Rush University Cancer Center - Section of Oncology

The Comprehensive Oncology Clinics at Rush consist of a team of cancer specialists who work together to provide leading-edge, comprehensive, compassionate care for the treatment of a wide array of cancers. These professionals work together to design comprehensive treatment plans to match the needs of each individual patient. Our team of specialists includes medical oncologists, hematologists, surgeons, radiation oncologists, nurses, psychologists, nutritionists and palliative care specialists.  The patient’s primary  physician can meet with the care team at Rush to discuss the case, review diagnostic tests and help to develop a treatment plan.

Several cancer specialists at Rush have been listed as among the best in Chicago and the United States by Chicago Magazine.

MEET OUR TEAM

 

Marta Batus, MD is an associate professor of internal medicine in the Section of Medical Oncology for the Division of Hematology, Oncology and Cell Therapy at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago.  Dr. Batus sub-specializes in lung cancer and sarcoma.  Dr. Batus received her medical degree from Rush University Medical Center and completed her fellowship and residency at Rush University Medical Center.  She received her Bachelor of Science in Cell And Structural biology/Pre-medicine, and Minor in Chemistry from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Illinois. Dr. Batus has clinical expertise and research interests in lung cancer and sarcomas, she collaborates with SARC (Sarcoma Alliance through Research and Collaboration) on clinical trials.  Dr. Batus speaks fluent English, Polish and Russian.  She is a member of Rush Cancer Committee.  Her primary goal is to provide an excellent care to all her patients.  ​ 

Philip D. Bonomi MD is the Alice Pirie Wirtz Professor of Medical Oncology at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago Illinois, where he also acts as the  Director of the Division of Hematology, Oncology and Cell Therapy.  Dr. Bonomi received his medical degree from the University of Illinois College of Medicine in Chicago.  While an intern in internal medicine he also completed a master of science degree at the Graduate School of Biochemistry at the University of Illinois.  After finishing his residency in internal medicine at Geisinger Medical Center in Danville, Pennsylvania, Dr. Bonomi served as a Lieutenant Commander in the United States Naval Reserve.  Upon returning to civilian life, he accepted a fellowship in oncology at Rush-{Presbyterian St. Luke’s’ Medical Center in Chicago.  He has remained at Rush University Medical Center, where he holds his current professorship since that time. 

Dr. Bonomi has been involved in lung cancer research for more than three decades.  He currently serves on the American Board of Internal  Medicine, Subspecialty Board on Medical Oncology and LUNGevity Scientific Advisory Board.  He is a member of the International Associate for the Study of Lung Cancer, and has served as the chairman of the Thoracic Committee for the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group and Co-chairman, non-small cell lung cancer studies,  Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group, Lung Steering Committee.  Dr. Bonomi has authored more than 150 journal articles. The objectives  of his  research  are identification of novel treatments for  lung cancer and  discovery  of molecular profiles which define biochemical processes involved in lung cancer development and progression.   ​

Melody Cobleigh, MD, is Professor of Medicine at Rush Medical College. She holds the Brian Piccolo Endowed Chair for Cancer Research. She is a medical oncologist who specializes in breast cancer prevention, diagnosis and treatment. She has also published on issues relating to quality of life in breast cancer survivors. Dr. Cobleigh is the Director of Medical Oncology of Rush University Medical Center.

She has conducted research and published on chemotherapy, endocrine therapy, retinoid therapy, monoclonal antibody treatment, anti-angiogenesis agents, anti-sense therapy and tumor vaccine strategies for breast cancer. Bridging the gap between the clinic and the research laboratory in understanding the biology of breast disease and mechanisms of resistance and sensitivity to targeted therapies is a major interest.

 

Dr. Cobleigh’s national service includes having served on the American Society of Clinical Oncology Program Committee multiple times (Breast Cancer), the Patient Advocacy Committee, the Health Services Research Committee and three terms on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Clinical Oncology. In addition, she has been a member of study sections of the National Institutes of Health, the Medical Advisory Board of the Y-Me National Breast Cancer Organization. She is a member of the Board of Directors of the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project.​

Mary Jo Fidler, MD  attended Cornell University in Ithaca, New York for undergraduate work. She received her medical degree from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in Bronx , New York and then went on to complete her internal medicine residency at the McGaw Medical Center of Northwestern University in Chicago. She completed her fellowship in hematology-oncology in 2007 at Rush, where she stayed on to specialize in head and neck and thoracic malignancies. She is fluent in Spanish.  Dr. Fidler's research interests focus on lung cancer signaling pathways in both blood and serum as predictors of response to anti-cancer therapies.  She is also studying outcomes in stage III lung cancer patients. Dr. Fidler is running clinical trials testing new targeted therapies in lung cancer.

Dr Fidler currently serves on the Board of Trustees for the Chicago Medical Society and is chair of the Illinois State Medical Society Council on Membership and Advocacy. She is Past-Chair of the Illinois State Medical Society Resident and Fellow Section and spent 3 years on the Society's Board of Trustees. She currently serves on the Council of Membership and Advocacy for the ISMS.   She also is a mentor for high school students at St. Ignatius College Preparatory where she attended high school. ​ 

Marisa Hill, MD, is an assistant professor of medicine at Rush University Medical Center. She is a medical oncologist who specializes in cancers of the gastrointestinal tract.

She has conducted research in the treatment of pancreatic cancer. 

Katherine B. Kabaker, MD is an assistant professor of medicine in Oncology specializing in breast cancer. Dr. Kabaker is a graduate from Rush University Medical College and completed her residency in internal medicine as well as fellowship training both hematology and medical oncology at Rush.

Dr. Kabaker is board certified in internal medicine, medical oncology and hematology. She is a member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology. 

William Leslie, MD, FACP is an assistant professor at Rush Medical College. He is board certified in Medical Oncology and Hematology, and specializes in the treatment of gastrointestinal malignancies.

He has published in peer reviewed journals and conducts clinical research.

 Dr. Leslie is a member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), American Society of Hematology (ASH), American Geriatrics Society, American College of Physicians (ACP), and Illinois Medical Oncology Society. 

Nicklas Pfanzelter, MD, is an Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Section of Medical Oncology for the Division of Hematology, Oncology and Cell Therapy at Rush University Medical Center. He is a medical oncologist who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of prostate, kidney, bladder, testicular cancers and melanoma.

 Dr. Pfanzelter received a bachelors of science in psychology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and his medical degree from the University of Chicago. He completed residency training in Internal Medicine and fellowship training in Hematology and Oncology at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. There he also pursued advanced studies in clinical epidemiology.

He is interested in new therapies for genitourinary cancers and melanoma, the long term health outcomes and quality of life of cancer survivors, and cancer epidemiology.

 

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Ruta D. Rao, MD is an Associate Professor of Medicine. She is the Program Director of the Hematology/Oncology Fellowship Program as well as the Director for the Coleman Comprehensive Breast Center. Dr. Rao received her BA from Northwestern University, Evanston, IL and her MD from the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health in Madison. She completed her Internship at the University of Southern California/Los Angeles County Hospital, residency at the University of Illinois-Chicago and her fellowship in Hematology/Oncology at Rush University Medical Center. Since then, she has remained as faculty at Rush. Dr. Rao’s clinical practice and research focuses exclusively on breast cancer. She has conducted research and published on endocrine therapy and targeted therapy for breast cancer.  She has also published a book chapter on the systemic therapy of breast cancer. 

Dr. Rao is board certified in Internal Medicine, Medical Oncology and Hematology and holds memberships in, American Society of Hematology, American Society of Clinical Oncology, National Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project, Indo-American Cancer Association and the American Cancer Society, Chicago Downtown Regional Leadership Board Member. ​​


John L. Showel, MD, is an associate professor of medicine in oncology. He is a graduate of the University Of Illinois College Of Medicine at Chicago. He completed his residency in internal medicine and clinical fellowship in hematology at Rush and a clinical fellowship in oncology at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City. Dr. Showel shares his expertise in prostate, kidney and bladder cancer as well as head and neck and brain tumors.

 Dr. Showel is board certified in internal medicine and holds memberships in the Chicago Society of Internal Medicine and the American Society of Clinical Oncology. 

Lydia Usha, MD, is an associate professor of medicine in oncology. She received her MD degree from North-Western State Medical University in St. Petersburg (Leningrad), Russia. She completed her internship in Medicine at St. Petersburg Clinical Hospital #32, Russia, her residency in Internal Medicine at California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco, California, and fellowship in hematology/oncology at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Her areas of expertise are breast and gynecological cancers. She is also the Director of Rush Inherited Susceptibility to Cancer (RISC) Program.

 

Dr. Usha is board certified in Medical Oncology and holds memberships in American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), Gynecological Oncology Group (GOG), and American Medical Association (AMA).

 

Her research interests include genetic predisposition to cancer as well as novel treatments for breast and gynecologic cancers. She instructs medical residents and hematology/oncology fellows at Rush University within the areas of her expertise. She also teaches methods of creative thinking in biomedical sciences to trainees.​

Services

​​​​​​​The Coleman Foundation comprehensive cancer clinics at Rush provide a full spectrum of care for patients at risk for or diagnosed with the following cancers:

 

Each specialty clinic provides a full spectrum of care for patients with cancer, including the following services:

  • Expert diagnosis
  • Advanced treatment options, including new research protocols 
  • Complementary therapies through the Cancer Intergrative Medicine Program
  • Supportive and educational services
  • Second opinion services 

 

At each clinic, diagnostic and treatment services are coordinated by a dedicated nurse to ensure that patients receive quality care in a timely and efficient manner.

Brain and Spine Tumors

When treating brain tumors, the team at the Coleman Foundation Comprehensive Brain and Spine Tumor Clinic at Rush collaborates to devise and implement treatment plans that are as gentle as possible on the patient while still providing the best possible outcomes. This combined approach ensures that every patient receives state-of-the-art care, tailored to his or her specific cancer, from some of the most experienced and qualified specialists in the area.

Breast Cancer

The Coleman Foundation Comprehensive Breast Clinic at Rush was the first of its kind in the Midwest. Thoughtfully designed and patient-friendly, the center offers compassionate care backed by all the resources of a world-class academic medical center.

Women who come to the center may have a lump, an abnormal mammogram, a diagnosis or a family history of breast cancer. For early detection of breast cancer, regular screening mammograms are offered through the Rush Breast Imaging Center, which is staffed by highly skilled radiologists who specialize in breast imaging. Genetic counseling and testing is also available to help women determine whether they are at risk of developing breast cancer.

When cancer is diagnosed, patients have access to the latest and most innovative treatment options, including  immunotherapies, advanced chemotherapy approaches, the latest radiation therapies and a full range of surgical options for breast cancer.

Lung Cancer

The Coleman Foundation Comprehensive Lung Cancer Clinic at Rush is a multidisciplinary group of highly trained physicians that provides comprehensive care for patients diagnosed with, or suspected to have, lung cancer, other malignancies of the chest, or metastatic disease that has spread to the lung from another cancer site. New patients are seen within five to seven days.

The clinic provides a full range of the latest diagnostic and most innovative treatment options. These include minimally invasive surgery, such as video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) as well as a full range of surgical procedures for both early and advanced lung cancer. Also available are groundbreaking targeted therapies, advanced chemotherapy approaches and the latest radiation treatments.

Gastrointestinal Cancers

The Coleman Foundation Comprehensive Clinic for Gastrointestinal Cancers at Rush brings together a team of experts in gastroenterology, medical oncology, surgery, radiation oncology, pathology, psychosocial oncology and genetics to provide a full spectrum of care for patients with gastrointestinal cancers. In addition to diagnostic and treatment care, the clinic also provides genetic testing and family counseling.

Head and Neck Cancers

Head and neck cancers, including those found on the skull base, represent only 3 percent of all cancers in the United States. These rare cancers require highly specialized expertise and treatment. The Coleman Foundation Head and Neck Cancer Center at Rush is one of Chicago's most comprehensive programs for the treatment of head and neck cancers.

The center's team of physicians all have specialized training and experience to treat these rare tumors. Also available in the clinic are speech and language therapists to help patients with problems swallowing or talking, and a dietitian to offer nutritional support. New patients are seen within five to seven days.

At Rush, patients have a wide range of treatment options, including minimally invasive surgical procedures, when surgery is needed. Innovative treatment plans often include chemotherapy combined with targeted radiation therapy.  This is the best approach for many patients, even those with advanced or difficult-to-treat cancers.

Accreditation and Recognition

Rush University Cancer Care
1725 W. Harrison St.
Professional Building I
Suite 1010
Chicago, IL 60612
Phone: (312) 942-5904
Fax: (312) 942-3192
Email: cancer_center@rush.edu
Driving Directions

Rush Cancer Care in Oak Park
610 S. Maple Avenue
Suite 5400
Oak Park, IL 60304
Phone: (708) 660-6607
Fax: (708) 660-6602
Email: cancer_center@rush.edu
Driving Directions

Rush Cancer Care in Lisle
430 Warrenville Road
Suite 200
Lisle, IL 60532
Phone: (630) 724-8700
Fax: (630) 724-8702
Email: cancer_center@rush.edu
Driving Directions

Practice Resources

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