MedStar Health continues to offer expert clinical care to and research treatment opportunities for patients with melanoma within an interdisciplinary network based at both at MedStar Washington Hospital Center and MedStar Georgetown University Hospital. The Network is tightly linked to the Melanoma Research Program at the Georgetown-Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center (one of 47 NCI Designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the US and the only such one in the District of Columbia). Our Melanoma team remains the most experienced and comprehensive group for the treatment of patients with all stages of melanoma in the Greater Washington, DC area.
MedStar Georgetown University Hospital’s Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center is now curing patients with high-risk and distant metastatic melanoma with FDA-approved and research immunotherapy treatments. Now the standard of care and the backbone for new research studies, these immunotherapies work by restoring the function of tumor specific immune cells inside the tumor, enabling the immune system to fight the cancer on its own.These approaches are not chemotherapy and therefore do not have the side effects traditionally associated with chemotherapy. Instead, side effects are all related to activation of the immune system and can be addressed without altering the effectiveness of the immunotherapy.
Our team consists of the following physicians each of whom are Board certified in their various disciplines and have a special expertise in dealing with patients with melanoma.
Michael Atkins, MD is Deputy Director of the Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center and the Scholl Professor and Vice Chair of the Department of Medical Oncology at Georgetown University Medical Center. He is an internationally recognized expert in the management of patients with high risk and metastatic melanoma. Dr. Atkins directs the Melanoma Center at MedStar Washington Hospital Center and leads the Melanoma Research Program within the MedStar Georgetown Cancer Network, which has multiple active cutting edge clinical trials underway for patients with advanced melanoma. He previously led the Cutaneous Oncology Program at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and the Melanoma Research Program at the Dana Farber Harvard Cancer Center, both in Boston. He edits the Melanoma Section for Uptodate and is Co-editor of the 5th Edition of the Cutaneous Melanoma textbook. He serves on the Board of the Directors of the Melanoma Research Foundation, is a Member of the Nominating Committee for the American Society of Clinical Oncology and is a past President of the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer.
Geoff Gibney, MD
Suthee Rapisuwon, MD
Kellie Parks, NP is an Oncology Nurse practitioner focusing on treatment of patients with all stages of melanoma. She received her NP degree from the Georgetown School of nursing and worked as an inpatient oncology nurse for several years before joining the melanoma disease group. She works closely with Dr. Atkins and they both see patients at Medstar Washington Hospital Center and MedStar Georgetown University Hospital.
Arash Radfar, MD is director of Dermatopathology at MedStar Washington Hospital Center. He has completed his residency training in Anatomic Pathology at the Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School. He also completed a fellowship training in Dermatopathology at the Harvard Combined Program under the direction of Dr. Martin C. Mihm. He is board certified in Anatomic pathology and Dermatopathology and has practiced Dermatopathology for over 10 years. Before joining MedStar Washington Hospital Center, Dr. Radfar held academic positions in the Department of Dermatology at Boston University and University of Pittsburgh and served as dermatopathology program director at Miraca Life Science/ Tufts Medical School.
Mark Boisvert, MD is a Clinical Associate Professor of Surgery at Georgetown University Medical Center and is a member of the surgical oncology staff at both MedStar Georgetown University Hospital and MedStar Washington Hospital Center. He has served as the senior surgeon at the Melanoma Center for 15 years. He regularly performs wide local excisions, sentinel node biopsies and lymph node dissections with excellent results. He has significantly contributed to cooperative trials in melanoma therapy and is a reviewer for the Journal of Surgical Oncology for articles concerning melanoma and breast cancer.
Waddah Al-Refaie, MD is chief of Surgical Oncology, MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, and surgeon-in-chief, Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center. In addition, he is director of the Surgical Outcomes Research Center, a joint program of MedStar Georgetown University Hospital and Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center. Dr. Al-Refaie completed a fellowship in Surgical Oncology at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston and was on the surgical staff at the University of Minnesota before joining the MedStar Health and the Lombardi Cancer Center in 2012.
Rafael Convit, MD has held staff positions both MedStar Washington Hospital Center and MedStar Georgetown University Hospital. He is a member of the American College of Surgeons, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the National Capital Society of Plastic Surgeons, Inc. and the American Medical Association. Dr. Convit completed his residency in surgery at the Washington Hospital Center and a fellowship in Plastic Surgery at Georgetown University Medical Center. He is board-certified and a Diplomate of American Board of Plastic Surgery.
Karen Evans, MD
Michael Reilly, MD is board-certified in both Otolaryngology--Head & Neck Surgery and Facial Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery. He specializes in the treatment of complex head and neck cancer defects, including the excision and repair of melanoma defects in the head and neck. He routinely performs sentinel lymph node biopsy procedures as well as comprehensive lymph node dissections in the neck. Dr. Reilly did his residency in Otolaryngology—Head & Neck Surgery at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital and then pursued fellowship training in microvascular reconstructive surgery at the University of California Los Angeles before returning to Washington, DC as an Assistant Professor of Facial Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, with practices at both MedStar Georgetown University Hospital and MedStar Washington Hospital Center.
Sean Collins, MD, PhD, is an Associate Professor of Radiation Oncology at Medstar Georgetown University Hospital and a Member of the Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center. He is a graduate of the MSTP program at the University of Michigan. He went on to complete both an Internship in Surgery and a Residency in Radiation Oncology at Georgetown University Hospital. His areas of expertise are Radiosurgery and Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy for which he treats patients using the CyberKnife, a technology that allows for more accurate targeting of radiation therapy. The focus of his clinical research is to develop treatment protocols using the CyberKnife to minimize the toxicity of radiation dose escalation. To date he has treated over 1000 cancer patients using CyberKnife technology and has presented his work at major meetings and published multiple papers on his experience in peer reviewed journals.
Angelique Mitchell, RN is the nurse navigator for melanoma patients at MedStar Washington Hospital Center. She coordinates interdisciplinary care for these patients before, during, and after consultation. Angelique organizes a weekly conference for all Melanoma Team Members to review new patients and make consensus recommendations.
Djenenba Uschock, RN is the nurse navigator for melanoma patients at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital.
This group of knowledgeable and compassionate professionals are available to handle all of your patients’ melanoma needs. This group has the only team in the area capable of comprehensively treating the all stages and presentations of melanoma.