Five Minutes With Dr. Christina Baik

Editor’s Note: “Five Minutes With” is a new series about SCCA’s staff and physicians that is designed to give our readers a look into the “non-clinical” side of the people who work at SCCA. If there’s a doctor or staff member who you would like to know more about, or perhaps a question that you would like us to ask, please let us know.

christina-baikChristina Baik specializes in the treatment of lung and head and neck cancer. She first started seeing patients here at SCCA in 2011. Not long after she was born in Korea, her family moved to Costa Rica where her father—a Presbyterian pastor—was sent to minister to the small Korean community in San Jose. When she was in the seventh grade, her family moved to Reno, Nevada. Dr. Baik attended the University of Puget Sound, where she studied biology and music. She received her MD from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and her Masters in Public Health from the Harvard School of Public Health. Learn more about Dr. Baik’s clinical and research expertise here.

What’s the last book you read?
I am going through Prince of Caspian: the Return to Narnia. I find classic fantasy novels to be quite fascinating – being lost in a world beyond ours in these novels can be quite refreshing. I must admit though that I am often distracted by Netflix – totally into The West Wing these days.

What hobbies or activities do you enjoy doing outside of work?
puget-sound-loggersI love hiking and exploring new hiking trails. There are so many in Washington and I feel really blessed to be living here. I also enjoy just being in my recliner and spending a lazy day with no plans. I am really a homebody at heart.

Do you have a personal motto?
Live a life of grace and generosity. None of us are perfect and we live in an imperfect world. Let’s make the best out of it!

Who is the person you most admire?
My mother. She is the most energetic and curious person that I know. We don’t always see eye to eye, but I admire the passion she brings to all she does. I just hope I can be as full of life as she is when I am her age.

What is your favorite place to go in Seattle?
I must say that I have too many places to name one. But I always find myself in awe when I drive south down I-5 on a sunny day and find myself face to face with the awesome view of snow capped Rainier.

If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?
I would love to spend some extended time in Costa Rica. I spent part of my childhood there and have wonderful memories that still bring me warmth.

What is your favorite restaurant?
There is a Korean restaurant called Ka-Won in Lynnwood where the food is very good and pretty authentic – although can be pretty spicy too.

red-soxMariners, Sounders, or Seahawks?
I must say… Red Sox! (sorry…)

iPhone, Android, or Windows Phone?
I’m not much of a gadget person. I had a flip phone until about a year ago when people told me to join the 21st century and buy an iPhone. I probably would still be happy with a regular phone.

What career could you see yourself in if you weren’t an oncologist?
Probably a teacher. I think I would have been a good junior high history teacher.


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    MoDAWGs Update

    Wright-Stash-Day-19We’re halfway through Movember and so far our MoDAWGs team has recruited 86 members and raised $4,355. So how does that compare with other Mo-Teams in Seattle? Up the street at Amazon they’ve got 1,015 Mo Bros and Sistas who have raised $43K. Starbucks has 134 members who have raised nearly $13K. And Microsoft has 244 members and over $15K raised. That’s a lot of facial hair growing in the Seattle area. Check out MoDAWG leader Dr. Jonathan Wright′s progress month-to-date at right.

    Movember-Tailgate-2014This Saturday, Dr. Wright will kickoff a Movember tailgate party before the Oregon State game. If you’re going to the game, be sure to stop by the tailgate with the MoDAWGs banner between lots E15RV and E12 (click on the map at left). Come enjoy mustaches galore, tailgate appetizers like beef sliders and mac and cheese bites, and even a mustache cake! The party starts at 4:30pm, gametime is 7:30. See you there and go Huskies! And if you haven’t yet become a MoDAWG, it’s not too late: signup here.

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      SCCA Clinical Trial Openings

      Clinical TrialsListed below are clinical trials that have opened at SCCA in the last several weeks. These trials are looking at new treatments for patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma, relapsed or refractory leukemia, myelodysplastic syndromes, and gynecologic cancers including endometrial cancer, ovarian cancer, and primary peritoneal cancer. For more information about these trials, click on the links below. Check out our website to learn about the more than 200 ongoing clinical trials at SCCA. And follow us on Twitter at @SCCA_Trials  for information about recently opened trials.

      ADI PEG 20 Plus Sorafenib for Advanced Hepatocellular Carcinoma
      A Phase 1 Study of ADI PEG 20 Plus Sorafenib in Subjects With Advanced Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC)

      Genetically Modified T Cells Directed Against CD19 for Relapsed/Refractory CD19+ Leukemia
      Pediatric and Young Adult Leukemia Adoptive Therapy (PLAT)-02: A Phase 1/2 Feasibility and Safety Study of CD19-CAR T Cell Immunotherapy for CD19+ Leukemia

      Donor Umbilical Cord Blood Transplant w/wo Ex-Vivo Expanded Cord Blood Progenitor Cells for Leukemia and Myelodysplastic Syndromes (2603)
      Multi-center, Open-Label Randomized Study of Single or Double Myeloablative Cord Blood Transplantation With or Without Infusion of Off-The-Shelf Ex Vivo Expanded Cryopreserved Cord Blood Progenitor Cells in Patients With Hematologic Malignancies

      Rucaparib as Switch Maintenance Following Platinum-Based Chemotherapy for Gynecological Cancer (9191)
      A Multicenter, Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Phase 3 Study of Rucaparib as Switch Maintenance Following Platinum-Based Chemotherapy in Patients with Platinum-Sensitive, High-Grade Serous or Endometrioid Epithelial Ovarian, Primary Peritoneal or Fallopian Tube Cancer

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        Flu Season is Here. Are You Ready?

        injectionneedleThe cold and flu season is upon us, and efforts to protect patients from catching a viral infection have been underway at SCCA for months. Seasonal  flu most commonly peaks between December and February, and cancer increases the risk of developing complications from a typical flu virus. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that cancer patients, survivors, and caregivers be vaccinated against seasonal flu.

        A campaign to vaccinate SCCA staff began in September, and this year nearly 97 percent of the staff received a flu vaccine. Nationally, only 72.5 percent of health care workers were vaccinated against the flu, according to the most recent CDC analysis.  Read more about how SCCA has worked to increase its vaccination rates in recent years.

        The importance of protecting cancer patients from the flu is underscored in this profile from our partners at Fred Hutch, which includes the story of Bridget Clawson, a breast cancer patient who survived surgery, radiation, and nearly a year of chemotherapy only to end up in the emergency room with a case of viral pneumonia that nearly took her life. Current SCCA patients who have not yet received a flu shot should ask their nurse or doctor about getting one during their next appointment. The SCCA Infection Control team is also a resource for questions from patients, families, and staff.

        If you’re looking for more information, check out the CDC’s resources on what you should know about this year’s flu season and frequently asked questions about the flu for cancer patients, survivors, and caregivers.  You can even watch the U.S. Surgeon General receive his flu shot. Now is the time to protect yourself against the seasonal flu.

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          Thriving for Cancer Survivors

          thriving-fall-2014The Fall 2014 issue of Thriving is now available. Thriving is a quarterly newsletter aimed at the needs of cancer survivors. This issue of Thriving includes articles about overcoming chemobrain, the sugar and cancer connection, the benefits of exercise for breast cancer survivors, and spiritual troubles after receiving a bone marrow transplant. You can download a PDF version of Thriving as well as read it online. To receive Thriving in your inbox, visit our newsletter subscription page.

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