- With Mayo Clinic medical oncologist
Timothy J. Moynihan, M.D.read biographyclose window
Timothy J. Moynihan, M.D.Timothy Moynihan, M.D.
"As a practicing medical oncologist, I meet with patients and families every day to help manage their course through this disease called cancer. This experience provides unique insight into the needs of cancer patients, their families and loved ones and brings into sharp focus the need for reliable information to be readily available in terms that can be easily understood." — Dr. Timothy Moynihan
Dr. Timothy Moynihan believes that providing consumers with accurate, timely information on the broad, complex topic of cancer is the biggest challenge facing medical websites. As the guiding force behind our cancer content, he makes sure Mayo Clinic meets the test.
Dr. Moynihan, born in Las Vegas, N.M., and raised in Denver, is a consultant in medical oncology at Mayo Clinic and an associate professor at Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Rochester, Minn. He's board certified in internal medicine, medical oncology, and hospice and palliative care medicine.
He did his medical oncology training at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, and then went on to the University of Minnesota and St. Paul Regions Medical Center for seven years before moving to Mayo Clinic in 1999. Dr. Moynihan is medical director of the Mayo Clinic hospice.
Dr. Moynihan serves as the education chair for the Department of Oncology and the fellowship program director. Four times he has been selected as Teacher of the Year in medical oncology and elected to the Teacher of the Year Hall of Fame.
Past honors include distinguished clinical teacher at the University of Minnesota Medical School, best internist at the Medical College of Wisconsin and recipient of the Upjohn Achievement Award for Excellence in Medicine. Dr. Moynihan serves on several national committees for the American Society of Clinical Oncology.
"The Internet provides a ready source of information on a wide range of topics of interest to those affected by cancer," Dr. Moynihan says. "The difficulty is trying to decide which sites provide reputable information and which information is relevant to each individual patient. The long history and tradition of excellence associated with Mayo Clinic assures you that information provided will be reliable, up-to-date and comprehensive."
- HER2-positive breast cancer: What is it?
Risk factors (1)
- Breast implants and cancer: Any connection?
Tests and diagnosis (3)
- Conflicting mammogram results: What can I do?
- Breast implants: Do they interfere with mammograms?
- Mammogram: Can it find cancer in dense breasts?
Treatments and drugs (4)
- Breast cancer radiation: Can it cause dry skin?
- Ginger for nausea: Does it work?
- Gene expression profiling for breast cancer: What is it?
- see all in Treatments and drugs
Coping and support (1)
- Palliative care: Who is it for?
- Mammogram guidelines: What are they?
Palliative care: Who is it for?
I'm receiving adjuvant chemotherapy for breast cancer and my doctor has suggested I see a palliative care specialist. Does this mean my prognosis isn't good?
from Timothy J. Moynihan, M.D.
Not necessarily. Palliative care is for anyone who has been diagnosed with a life-threatening illness. The goal of the palliative care specialist is to reduce any signs and symptoms you may experience and make you more comfortable.
Palliative care is often confused with hospice care, which is generally reserved for people with terminal illnesses. Hospice care workers provide palliative care, but palliative care can be given at any time during an illness, not just at the end of life.
A palliative care specialist works with your doctor and a team of chaplains, counselors, nurses and other professionals to create an individualized plan to reduce signs and symptoms you experience during your treatment. This can make it more likely that you'll complete your treatment and maintain a quality of life that allows you to continue doing things that are important to you.
Recent data shows that for people with certain types of cancer, early use of palliative care services not only makes them feel better, but also helps them live longer when compared with people who get standard treatment only.Next question
Mammogram guidelines: What are they?
- Bruera E, et al. Overview of symptom control in the terminally ill cancer patient. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed Jan. 27, 2011.
- What is palliative care. GetPalliativeCare.org. http://www.getpalliativecare.org/whatis. Accessed Jan. 27, 2011.
- Okon TR, et al. Overview of patient evaluation in palliative care. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed Jan. 27, 2011.
- Temel JS, et al. Early palliative care for patients with metastatic non-small-cell lung cancer. The New England Journal of Medicine. 2010;363:733.
- Moynihan TJ (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic. Rochester, Minn. Jan. 27, 2011.