The Curtis and Elizabeth Anderson Cancer Institute
From our expert physicians to our cutting-edge technology and compassionate care, we’re with you every step of your fight against cancer. The Memorial Health Curtis and Elizabeth Anderson Cancer Institute (ACI) offers the most comprehensive cancer treatment in the region.
The ACI provides cancer screening, diagnosis, surgery, medical oncology (chemotherapy), radiation oncology, support services, and long-term follow-up. We offer:
- The only children’s cancer program in the region
- The region's first practice devoted exclusively to breast health
- The region's first gynecologic cancer program
- Nurse navigators to help guide patients and their families through the treatment process
- Access to an array of clinical trials through the National Cancer Institute’s Community Oncology Research Program
Our care process
The ACI has cancer teams specializing in breast, colorectal, neurology, pediatric, urology, thoracic, GI, and gynecological cancers. These teams combine the talents of surgeons, physicians, nurses, social workers, and dietitians, to provide an individualized care plan for each patient.
There are nearly 14 million cancer survivors living in the U.S. Survival rates are climbing, thanks to better screening and early detection. While we don’t have screening tools to catch every type of cancer early, the tests that we do have are very effective and save countless lives every year.
Beginning at age 20, all men and women should have an annual physical that includes an examination of the mouth, skin, lymph nodes and testes or ovaries.
Lung cancer is one of the most common cancers worldwide, and is the leading cause of cancer-related deaths in both men and women in the U.S.
Lung cancer risks
- Exposure to secondhand smoke
- Exposure to industrial chemicals (arsenic, asbestos, beryllium and uranium)
- Family history
- Radiation to the chest
- Other lung illnesses (emphysema, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, tuberculosis)
Lung cancer symptoms
- Frequent coughing
- Shortness of breath
- Pain in the chest, shoulder or upper back
- Coughing up blood
- Loss of appetite and weight loss
- General pain
- Swelling of the face or neck
Lung cancer screening
A low-dose CT scan of the lungs may detect lung cancer in its earliest stage, when it is easiest to treat. You may be a candidate for low-dose CT lung cancer screening if you meet the following criteria.
Low-dose CT lung cancer screening criteria:
- 30 pack-year history of smoking or greater. (A pack-year refers to the number of cigarettes smoked per day for a year. Smoking one pack per day for 30 years equates to 30 pack-years. Smoking two packs a day for 30 years equates to 60 pack-years. Smoking a half-pack a day for 30 years equates to 15 pack-years.)
- If you’re an ex-smoker and you've quit within the past 15 years
- Age 55-80
- 20 pack-year smoking history and one additional risk factor, including COPD or pulmonary fibrosis; radon exposure; occupational exposure to asbestos, silica, cadmium, arsenic, beryllium, chromium, diesel fumes or nickel; personal history of cancer; or family history of cancer
Please make an appointment with your primary care physician to see if you are a candidate and to learn about the benefits of this screening.
Memorial Health is the first healthcare system in Georgia to offer a robotic-assisted bronchoscopy for patients with lung nodules.
This new technology offers:
- Earlier detection of lung cancer with greater accuracy
- A safer minimally invasive biopsy procedure compared to CT-guided biopsy of the lung
- The ability to reach the entire lung safely unlike traditional bronchoscopy
- Fewer complications compared to traditional biopsy techniques
- Minimally invasive, outpatient procedure
- Earlier detection
- Care team approach
- Low complication risk
Thoracic multidisciplinary program
Patients diagnosed with lung cancer will see a multidisciplinary team of board-certified physicians including:
- Cardiothoracic surgeon
- Interventional pulmonologist
- Medical oncologist
- Radiation oncologist
- Oncology nurse navigator
We know that lung cancer patients often experience an extended time from diagnosis to treatment plan; the goal of our program is to reduce the length of time for development of their treatment plan.
To learn more about our lung cancer program and screenings, call (912) 350-LUNG (5864).
Annual mammograms, beginning at age 40, has been shown to increase survival rates and identify cancer at an earlier stage. Breast cancers in younger women tend to be more aggressive. When they are caught early, women have more treatment options and better outcomes.
Screening guidelines for women of average risk
- Beginning at age 40, women should have a mammogram and clinical breast exam every year for as long as they are in good health. To schedule a mammogram, call (912) 350-PINK (7465).
- Women in their 20s and 30s should have a clinical breast exam every three years.
- Women should conduct monthly breast self-exams beginning in their 20s.
Beginning at age 50, men and women should begin receiving a colorectal screening. There are multiple options, we recommend you discuss the options with your primary care physician.
At age 21, women should have their first cervical cancer screening test. From age 21 to 29, women should have a Pap test every three years. From age 30 to 65, women should have a Pap test and HPV test every five years or continue to have a Pap test alone every three years. Women over age 65 who have a history of normal pap and cervical cancer test results can discontinue screening.
Nearly one in six American men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his lifetime. With greater awareness, prostate cancer detection is on the rise and mortality is declining. Also, better treatments are allowing more men to return to active and productive lives after treatment.
- Starting at age 50, men should talk with their doctor about having an annual prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test with or without a rectal exam.
- African American men and men with a family history of prostate cancer should begin screening at age 45.
Oncologists can treat cancer with radiation therapy, surgery or medications, including chemotherapy, hormonal therapy and biologic therapy, either alone or in combination. At ACI, we specialize in delivering the latest cancer treatments. Our leading edge technology treats cancer in a number of ways. All in a comfortable and compassionate environment.
At least 50% of all cancer patients will receive radiation therapy at some stage during their course of treatment. When your treatment plan calls for radiation treatment, we will provide you with cutting edge radiation oncology services as a part of our comprehensive cancer care program. Our radiation oncologists have expertise in treating all types of cancers with extensive experience in stereotactic radiosurgery, and the highly trained radiation therapy team will be with you every step of the way during your radiation treatment.
Clinical trials help evaluate the effectiveness, safety and benefits of medications. At ACI, we are pleased to offer a cell phone application to make it easier for physicians, patients and families to find clinical trials. The app provides information about our trials, eligibility criteria and contact information. If you have questions about the app or about a clinical trial, contact us at (800) 343-3025.
We were named in honor of Curtis and Elizabeth Anderson in 2001, after their generosity made it possible to build a new facility for our cancer services. The vision of the Andersons was to provide the highest level of oncology care so no one in the region would have to leave Savannah and their support system for cancer treatment. We strive every day to uphold this vision by offering state of the art radiation oncology, fellowship trained surgical care, a wide array of support services and National Cancer Institute sponsored clinical trials for adult and pediatric patients.
Curtis Anderson, retired investment banker, and his wife, Elizabeth (Libba), reside in Savannah. Curtis served in the U.S. Navy and then spent 19 years in the corporate and investment banking field. Like many people, the Andersons were impacted by cancer. They watched close friends leave the Savannah area to find the latest cancer treatments. Together, they vowed to do whatever they could to bring a world-class cancer treatment center to Savannah. They worked with Memorial Health University Medical Center to develop the Curtis and Elizabeth Anderson Cancer Institute.