OSF HealthCare Announces Advancements in Cancer Care

6/06/2019 - Mendota, Illinois

  • Shylendra Sreenivasappa

    Shylendra Sreenivasappa, MD

OSF HealthCare is pleased to announce a number of enhancements to cancer care services for patients within north central Illinois including additional specialists and advanced treatment options.

Shylendra Sreenivasappa, MD (Dr. Sreeni for short) recently joined the team at OSF HealthCare Saint Paul Medical Center in Mendota. Specializing in Hematology/Oncology, Dr. Sreeni completed his residency and fellowship at John H. Stroger Hospital of Cook County, Chicago. He has been employed with OSF HealthCare since 2010, currently also serving the Rockford community at OSF Saint Anthony – Center for Cancer Care where he oversees clinical trials and genetics programs.

Dr. Sreeni offers treatment options including chemotherapy, biotherapy, immunotherapy and high risk cancer genetics for patients with a number of conditions including breast and lung cancer, lymphoma and gastrointestinal oncology.

Breast cancer patients will also benefit from Dr. Sreeni’s collaboration with Megan Oppliger, RN, an oncology nurse navigator with OSF HealthCare. Oppliger is a dedicated registered nurse who cares for patients receiving a breast cancer diagnosis and/or treatment through a local OSF facility. She serves as a member of the patient’s cancer care team and is specially trained to assist in all aspects of the care experience. As an educator and an advocate for the patient and family, Oppliger acts as a single point of contact while facilitating personalized cancer care.

Oppliger also collaborates with Anthony Zalduendo, MD, a Radiation Oncologist with OSF HealthCare Saint Elizabeth Medical Center in Ottawa, to offer breast cancer navigation for his patients. Dr. Zalduendo specializes in radiation treatment, also caring for the conditions of breast and lung cancer.

Dr. Zalduendo was instrumental in bringing advanced technology to the region including a new Discovery™ IQ PET/CT scanner that was introduced in May as part of the hospital’s radiation oncology department. Combining a PET Nuclear Medicine scanner and a CT scanner into one machine, it obtains and fuses two scans together to provide the radiologist both anatomy and organ function in one image to help manage the patient’s condition and properly phase the treatment.

“This is a major upgrade and will help us provide state-of-the-art treatment to our patients,” stated Zalduendo. “Our patients can expect first-rate cancer care involving less toxicity by precisely localizing the tumor to provide a treatment that is easier to tolerate.”

The PET/CT scanner joins the Varian TrueBeam™ linear accelerator that was introduced in late September. This system utilizes arc therapy, a 360-degree treatment, allowing faster treatments than with the conventional fixed beam of radiation. Through intelligent automation, the amount of steps needed for imaging, positioning, and treatment decreases, resulting in less time the patient has to be on the treatment table.  The system also provides real-time imaging, allowing the therapy team to more accurately direct higher doses of radiation to the area of interest while synchronizing the treatment with the patient’s breathing.

Together, the three specialists and the advanced radiation technology combine to offer some of the area’s most comprehensive cancer treatment services. Hematology/oncology appointments in Mendota are available at 1401 E. 12th Street by calling (815) 539-1422.  Radiation oncology appointments in Ottawa are available at 1200 Starfire Drive by calling (815) 434-9999.

For more information about breast cancer navigation services available through OSF HealthCare, call (815) 431-3210.



JoEllyn Gahan
Public Relations & Communications Coordinator
(815) 539-7461