New oncologist busy at KRMC

KINGMAN ­ A new doctor with international experience is now treating patients afflicted with cancer and blood disorders at Kingman Regional Medical Center's Cancer Center.

Dr. Hamdy Mohtaseb, who was born in Jordan and raised in Egypt, went to work May 1 at KRMC. He re-located here after working eight years as a staff oncologist at St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center in Wayne, N.J.

Mohtaseb said he was contacted by KRMC administrators about the open position after they had first spoken with some of his fellow physicians in New Jersey.

"I came out and visited the area," he said. "I found there is a lot of room to help people with cancer.

"It's a growing problem in this area, and there's a need for oncology services. I also came because the surrounding medical community is favorable for a practicing oncologist."

Mohtaseb completed medical school in Cairo, Egypt, in 1980. He went to Doha Qatar in the Persian Gulf region and spent 10 years there, eight practicing in internal medicine and two years in oncology.

He came to the United States to do residency training and a fellowship at Seton Hall University in New Jersey during 1993-95, dividing time between St. Michael's Hospital and St. Joseph's Hospital.

"I chose oncology because it's a field in which a lot of help can be offered," Mohtaseb said. "There have been tremendous improvements in cancer care over the last 10 years.

"Treatment now has changed the whole picture of prognosis with a potential cure for many diseases. We're now able to cure cancers of the breast, lung, colon and prostate, along with lymphoma and leukemia."

Patient volumes at the KRMC Cancer Center are "moderate," but there is much growth potential as more and more retirees move to the area. Many people in their 60s and over are at the age where cancer used to be prevalent and some re-locating to the Kingman area either have contracted some form of cancer just before the move or are diagnosed with it soon after arriving, Mohtaseb said. KRMC is able to offer support to both the cancer patient and his or her family.

"We offer psychosocial support and other means of palliative care to alleviate symptoms and suffering," Mohtaseb said. "We're able to go beyond traditional medical care into other aspects of the patient's life, including home environment.

The KRMC Cancer Center often receives physician referrals from other counties either for primary care or second opinions. That is a testimonial to the center's excellent reputation, Mohtaseb said.