As a board-certified radiation oncologist, my expertise is using intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) to treat patients with thyroid and other head and neck cancers. Using this advanced form of 3D conformal radiotherapy, our goals are twofold — improving patients’ outcomes and decreasing the side effects of treatment.
There are many effective treatment options for patients diagnosed with tumors in the head and neck. Many of these tumors can be eliminated without the need of an invasive surgery, using radiation therapy alone or radiation in combination with chemotherapy (such as tumors in the tonsil, base of tongue, and soft palate). Before making a decision on which treatment to pursue, I believe it is important to have a consultation with a surgeon, radiation oncologist, and medical oncologist to hear about all the different options available.
I am also the principal investigator of a national clinical trial for the Radiation Therapy Oncology Group (RTOG) that evaluates IMRT for the treatment of nasopharyngeal cancer. In addition, I recently participated with many collaborators — including RTOG and the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) — to define the appropriate treatment volume for the neck in patients who are receiving IMRT for head and neck cancer.
Maximizing tumor control using proton therapy while minimizing acute and late side effects is another expertise of mine. My goal is to use the most ideal technology, whether proton therapy or intensity modulated radiation therapy, to personalize treatment for each patient with head and neck or thyroid cancer, and to ensure the best quality of life during this process while achieving a cure.
- Clinical Expertise: Skin Cancers; Head and Neck Cancers; Thyroid Cancer
- Awards and Honors: New York Magazine Top Doctors (2013-2016)
- Languages Spoken: English
- Education: MD, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey
- Residencies: NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center
- Board Certifications: Radiation Oncology
Research is integral to our mission at Memorial Sloan Kettering, and clinical trials help us discover better forms of patient care and treatment. For you, this could mean access to a new therapy or therapy combination. Click to see a list of the trials I’m currently leading.
Clinical Trials Led by Nancy Y. Lee
- A Phase II Study of Concurrent Radiation and Chemotherapy versus Radiation Alone in Resected High-Risk Malignant Salivary Gland Tumors
- A Phase II Study of Intensity-Modulated Radiation Therapy for the Treatment of Non-Anaplastic Non-Medullary Thyroid Cancer
- A Phase II Study of Proton versus Photon Beam Radiotherapy to Treat Head and Neck Cancer
- A Phase II/III Study of Surgery Followed by Radiation Therapy plus either Cisplatin, Docetaxel, or Both Drugs for High-Risk Squamous Cell Cancer of the Head and Neck
- A Phase III Study of Postoperative Radiation Therapy with and without Cetuximab for Locally Advanced Resected Head and Neck Cancer
- A Study of Customized Treatment for Nasopharyngeal Cancer Based on Epstein-Barr Virus DNA
- Feasibility Study Using Fluoro-Misonidazole Positron Emission Tomography to Detect Hypoxia in Head and Neck Cancer Patients
Clinical Trials Co-Investigated by Nancy Y. Lee
- A Phase I Study of BYL719 Given with Cetuximab and Radiation Therapy in Patients with Stage III/IVB Head and Neck Cancer
- A Phase II Study of Concurrent Intensity-Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT), Paclitaxel, and Pazopanib/Placebo for the Treatment of Anaplastic Thyroid Cancer
- A Phase II Study of Less Intensive Treatment for Head and Neck Cancer
- A Phase II Study of Nivolumab Immunotherapy with and without Stereotactic Radiation Therapy to Treat Patients with Metastatic Head and Neck Cancer
- A Phase II Study of Transoral Surgical Removal of HPV-Positive Locally Advanced Oropharynx Cancer Followed by Risk-Stratified Therapy
- A Phase II Study of Vismodegib plus Radiation Therapy for Locally Advanced Basal Cell Cancers of the Head and Neck
Most major health insurers offer plans that include MSK as one of their in-network providers. If MSK is in-network, it means all our doctors are too. Medicaid and New York State Medicare also provide benefits for care at MSK.Learn more