The Battle on Brain Tumors

Faculty Spotlight: Erin Dunbar, MD

Erin Dunbar, M.D.

During her fellowship at the University of Florida, Erin Dunbar, M.D., collaborated with UF leaders to establish a comprehensive neuro-oncology center for brain and spine tumor patients.

This quest led her to top-tier brain tumor centers to observe their best operational practices and bring this knowledge back to UF.

“I shadowed brain tumor centers to experience the best operational models,” she said. “I interviewed for dedicated neuro-oncology fellowships at a select number of those centers, and I ultimately chose Johns Hopkins University, partly because I felt it was the best model that could be translated back to UF.”

In 2007, Dunbar returned to her alma mater and is now an assistant professor of neurosurgery and co-director of the neuro-oncology center she helped establish, the Preston A. Wells Jr. Center for Brain Tumor Therapy.

When it comes to treating brain tumors, Dunbar takes a wide view when she establishes a patient’s treatment plan. She works closely with neurosurgeons, radiation oncologists, neurologists, psychologists, therapists and many others to devise a comprehensive plan of care for each patient and family, incorporating every tool in UF’s arsenal, from conventional therapy and radiation to clinical trials and rehabilitation services.

One of Dunbar’s most rewarding contributions since coming to UF three years ago has been establishing new collaborations across disciplines, all with one goal — to help patients. This interdisciplinary team includes physical therapists, psychologists and nurses for research, and UF health science librarians, social workers, and educators in the department of neurosurgery to help patients access needed health information.

“Our goal is to optimize the patient’s opportunities and well-being at every stage of their journey,” Dunbar said.

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Fall 2010

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