St. Mary’s General Hospital was designated a Level One Thoracic Centre in 2009. Working with Cancer Care Ontario, two thoracic surgeons complete approximately 100 lung resections and 15 esophagectomy operations for cancer annually.
Thoracic surgeons provide specialized clinical care for patients with a wide range of serious diseases of the thorax (the chest). These include conditions of the lungs, mediastinum (middle of the chest), chest wall, and esophagus. Click here to read about our Disease Specialties and Surgical Specialties.
The Thoracic Surgery team is part of the Diagnostic Assessment Program (DAP) located at Grand River Hospital’s Grand River Regional Cancer Centre. This close relationship with the Cancer Centre allows health care professionals to work with patients with lung cancer to develop a holistic plan of care that spans the health care continuum.
The Thoracic Program continues to explore new options and best practices related to thoracic surgery. St. Mary’s developed a combined Nurse Practitioner and First Assist position that offers a patient focused approach to care. This combined role was recognized by Cancer Care Ontario through its Innovation Award (2009). The Nurse Practitioner / First Assist participates in all aspects of a patient’s care, from assessment to assisting the surgeon during the operation, to managing post-operative care throughout discharge and follow up.
Watch a segment by CTV Southwestern Ontario on this innovative role
St. Mary’s seeks to be on the cutting edge of new technologies and procedures for thoracic surgery. We offer video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS), a minimally invasive type of lung surgery, as well as endobronchial ultrasound (EBUS), a minimallly invasive diagnostic procedure. The program was also the first in Ontario to begin using a digital chest drainage system that offers a more accurate assessment than traditional systems.
Thoracic surgeons serving St. Mary’s
Dr. Matthew Kilmurry
Dr. Paul Sharkey
Dr. Paul Chiasson
Click here for more information on how to refer a patient with suspected or diagnosed esophageal cancer, contact a thoracic surgeon directly or fax a referral to a physician office.
To refer a patient with a suspected or diagnosed thoracic malignancy, contact the Thoracic Diagnostic Assessment Program (DAP) at Grand River Hospital.
Phone: 519-749-4370 ext. 5458
Fax: Thoracic DAP Referral to 519-749-4385
Thoracic DAP Referral Form
Thoracic Diagnostic Assessment Program
The thoracic DAP at the Grand River Regional Cancer Centre (GRRCC) is an innovative joint program, between the GRRCC and St. Mary’s General Hospital, designed to shorten wait times for Waterloo-Wellington region patients with suspected lung cancer. The goal of the thoracic DAP team is to assess and diagnose lung cancer at the earliest possible phase of their cancer journey, decrease wait times for surgery and eliminate many visits to practitioners or health care facilities.
Patients can be referred by their family physician, a nurse practitioner or a physician at a walk-in clinic because of an abnormal chest x-ray or CT scan using the thoracic DAP referral form. The thoracic DAU offers a coordinated approach to assessing and diagnosing patients and provides necessary physical and emotional support. The thoracic DAP fosters an environment that supports both the patient and their family members.
The regional thoracic DAP team includes a thoracic surgeon, a respirologist, a clinical nurse specialized in lung cancer and a clinical secretary. Patients will see all or some of the members of the team as necessary. The physical and emotional needs of patients and their families are handled by various members of the team. The Thoracic DAP team has built a strong relationship with the diagnostic imaging departments of Grand River Hospital and St. Mary’s General Hospital to expedite necessary testing. Patient cases are also reviewed with a multidisciplinary team of lung cancer experts to determine the most appropriate course of action.
This regional clinic is located at the GRRCC in the radiation department on floor three at 835 King Street West in Kitchener.
For more information related to the Thoracic DAP at Grand River Hospital
Phone: 519-749-4370 ext. 5458
Matt Dubuc, RN(EC) MS, NP
St. Mary’s General Hospital
519-749-6578 ext. 5901
For more information on the St. Mary’s Level One Thoracic Surgery Centre contact
Leisa Faulkner, Program Director
Medicine and Chest Programs
519-749 6578 ext. 1999
Danny Veniott, Program Manager
519-749-6578 ext. 1557