Experts, Advocates Gather for Lung Cancer Symposium

Nov. 18, 2013 | Lung cancer experts, survivors and advocates gathered Nov. 8 to discuss the latest information in the fight against America’s deadliest cancer.

Tobacco and Disease: The Fourth Annual Lung Cancer Symposium featured a full day of speakers on topics ranging from the genetics of tobacco addiction to holistic treatment approaches.

The event was co-sponsored by the UAMS Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute, the Arkansas Cancer Coalition and the Arkansas Department of Health/Stamp Out Smoking.

Thaddeus Bartter, M.D., an interventional pulmonologist and professor of medicine in UAMS 
Departments of Pulmonary and Critical Care 
Medicine, chaired the event.

“Lung cancer kills more Arkansans than any other cancer. This event is just one way that we are working to educate both health care professionals and the public about the key issues, which range from tobacco’s dominant role in causing cancer to the latest treatment options,” said Bartter.

Comedian Rene Hicks kicked off the event, which was held at the Wyndham Riverfront in North Little Rock. After working for years in smoke-filled clubs, Hicks, a non-smoker, was diagnosed with lung cancer. She now uses comedy to spread her message about the dangers of smoking and the tobacco industry’s role in contributing to the lung cancer epidemic.

Other topics included “E-cigarettes: Way in or Way out?” by Bartter and Andrew Bergen, senior director of molecular genetics at SRI International, 
a nonprofit research institute, and “Legislation 
 and Tobacco: Who Runs our Lives?” by Arkansas 
Surgeon General Joe Thompson.

Several UAMS physicians and other experts presented a variety of sessions, and participants were invited to visit vendor booths and network at an afternoon reception.


Thaddeus Bartter, M.D., visits with a symposium participant during a break.

Symposium organizer Teka Bartter, APN, stands with Larry Johnson, M.D., director of the UAMS Division of Pulmonary and Critical Medicine.

Thaddeus Bartter, M.D., chaired and fourth annual Lung Cancer Symposium.

Comedian and lung cancer survivor Rene Hicks opened the session by sharing her story and perspective on the tobacco industry's role in the lung cancer epidemic.

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