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CANCER Services

From diagnosis to
treatment, you can get
the best cancer care
right here at home.

The Cancer Center at Cookeville Regional Medical Center is the largest single provider of cancer care in the region.

We offer a broad spectrum of cancer specialists and services to care for patients and their families. The good news is that all of these services are under one roof, including radiation therapy and chemotherapy. There’s no need to travel anywhere else.

Do you have cancer that runs in the family? Our genetic counselor can help you get that answer. She is the only one between Nashville, Knoxville and Chattanooga. If genetic testing reveals a link, proactive treatment is the best thing. Through the physicians’ affiliation with strong academic medical centers, we also offer clinical trials for patients.

Supportive services include:

  • Patient and family services
  • Nutrition services
  • Cancer registry
  • Tomotherapy
  • Da Vinci surgical robotic system
  • Chemotherapy/immunotherapy
  • Stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT)

Patient & Family Services

Don’t go through cancer treatment alone. The Cancer Center at Cookeville Regional has resources to help you through this.

Our social workers help patients, families and caregivers cope with the burden of facing a cancer diagnosis with face-to-face compassionate consideration. They are educated and skilled to assist with the psychological, social, emotional and spiritual issues that people have to deal with in oncology.

Social workers also help with financial assessment, transportation assistance, home health referrals and organization/facilitation of support groups.

Nutrition Services

Going through cancer treatment is hard on the body, which makes it even more important to get a good, balanced diet established.

Our registered dieticians have years of specialized oncology training and experience in helping cancer patients support their immune systems to counteract the effects of illness.

They provide nutritional assessment, analysis support and strategies to improve healing.

This will help you stay healthy while undergoing cancer treatment and into your time following treatment.

Cancer Registry

A cancer registry is an information system designed for the collection, storage, and management of data on persons with cancer.

Registries play a critical role in cancer surveillance, which tells us where we are in the efforts to reduce the cancer burden. Surveillance data may also serve as a foundation for cancer research and are used to plan and evaluate cancer prevention and control interventions.

For example, health officials, researchers, and others use cancer surveillance data to answer questions like, “Are more or fewer people getting colorectal cancer this year compared to last year?” or “Which groups of people are most likely to get skin cancer?”

The Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Program is the main program that the National Cancer Institute (NCI) uses to support cancer surveillance activities. It is an authoritative source of information on cancer incidence and survival in the United States. The SEER Program currently collects and publishes cancer incidence and survival data from population-based cancer registries covering approximately 48 percent of the U.S. population. The SEER Program is part of the NCI’s Surveillance Research Program, which provides national leadership in the science of cancer surveillance as well as analytical tools and methodological expertise in collecting, analyzing, interpreting, and disseminating reliable population-based statistics.

The SEER program also supports multiple types of research related to cancer by: helping connect patients with clinical trials that evaluate the effectiveness of new treatments, supporting studies that work with patients to answer specific questions about their cancer care and outcomes, and supporting other types of epidemiologic studies.

To learn more about cancer registries, visit


The Cancer Center at Cookeville Regional is the only facility offering TomoTherapy for cancer treatment in the Upper Cumberland.

What is TomoTherapy?
TomoTherapy provides 3D images of the tumor before each treatment using radiation and CT capabilities. It is a form of image-guided radiation therapy (IGRT) used to treat certain cancers.

By using intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) to match radiation intensity to tumor shapes, it spares the healthy tissue. It delivers radiation by rotating around the body, aiming targeted beams at tumors from many angles.

What is TomoTherapy used for?
This type of treatment makes it ideal for tumors that are hard to reach or next to vital organs. It is also used to treat multiple tumors at once and re-treat areas with fewer side effects.

TomoTherapy offers several advantages, including:

  • Real-time imaging of tumors for treatment planning
  • Targeted radiation precisely shaped to tumors
  • Higher-dose radiation delivery, potentially increasing treatment effectiveness
  • Less radiation of healthy organs and tissues, reducing side effects and complications

Da Vinci Robotic Surgical

The da Vinci robotic surgical system can help surgeons remove lung cancer, throat cancer and gynecological cancer.

This system allows surgeons to perform even the most complex and delicate procedures with precision through very small incisions, resulting in faster recovery time, less pain, less blood loss, less scarring and better clinical outcomes for the patient.

We have ENT, gynecologic, urogynecologic and thoracic surgeons trained in the da Vinci for those who qualify.

Chemotherapy / Immunotherapy

Our infusion center was built with the patient in mind.

Patients may receive their treatment overlooking the Healing Garden, in a private suite or in the open area.

Most treatment chairs are equipped with a personal television so that patients can enjoy their own television choices while receiving treatment.

Our patients’ comfort is a top priority. We offer warm blankets, snacks and lunches for patients receiving longer infusions.

Chemotherapy/immunotherapy is prepared in the pharmacy by dedicated, specially trained staff and an oncology pharmacist.

We are fortunate to employ a highly trained staff with special oncology certification who are trained to take care of the unique needs and treatments of oncology patients.

Our care teams are dedicated to helping you feel comfortable and supported during your cancer journey.

Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy (SBRT)

What is SBRT?
Stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) precisely targets tumors with very high doses of radiation.

SBRT is used to treat smaller tumors. Among these are many types of primary tumors, often prostate cancer, lung cancer and kidney cancer.

One common side effect of SBRT is fatigue. Other possible side effects depend on the tumor’s location.

How does SBRT work?
Like spokes on a wheel, SBRT uses several radiation beams of various intensities aimed at the tumor from different angles.

There are many sessions to plan treatment. During these sessions, the patient will undergo a CT, MRI or other imaging to allow doctors to precisely map the position and shape of the tumor. That allows them to create a customized treatment plan that determines beam angles and intensities.

For tumors in or near the lungs, there will be a time-lapsed video of the patient breathing. This will allow the doctor to factor in motion into the treatment plan.

To help with precise treatment, the team will also create a mold of the patient’s body near the tumor site. This will hold the patient in a position that makes treatment most effective, ensuring the tumor gets the full dose of radiation while sparing nearby healthy tissue.

Dr. Algis Sidrys talks about stereotactic body radiation therapy here:

Other Services

At the Cancer Center at Cookeville Regional, we look at the health of the whole patient. It truly takes a team effort.

We offer a variety of services to support the patient, caregiver and family.

  • Cancer conferences: Frequent multidisciplinary, hospital-wide conferences for the education of physicians regarding current oncology therapies and consultative services for patients
  • Cancer committee: A group of individuals, physicians and professional support staff dedicated to providing leadership for the cancer program
  • Patient and family education and support
  • Spiritual support: Spiritual support is provided through our chaplains
  • A number of surgical specialists on staff when surgery is an option for treatment of cancer
  • The latest in diagnostic workup, such as PET-CT
  • The latest MRI technology, including breast MRI
  • Cancer prevention and screening programs
  • Rehabilitation program, including physical and speech therapy
  • Lymphedema specialists