Merrick named fellow in American College of Radiology

WHEELING – Dr. Gregory Merrick, director of Wheeling Hospital’s Schiffler Cancer Center, has been elected a Fellow in the American College of Radiology (ACR).

Dr. Albert Blumberg, president of the ACR, said Merrick’s election was based on his outstanding contributions and service to radiology. The ACR works to maximize the value of radiology, radiation oncology, interventional radiology, nuclear medicine and medical physics.

Merrick, who also is director of the Urologic Research Institute and Men’s Health Center at Wheeling Hospital, is a member of the Best Doctors of America. He has been in the association’s database since 1998.

Under Merrick’s direction, the Schiffler Cancer Center has established an international reputation in the diagnosis and treatment of prostate cancer. The center has treated patients from 41 states and 16 countries.

Merrick is a nationally recognized uro-oncology expert. He is the past chairman of the multi-disciplinary American College of Radiology, Prostate Cancer Appropriateness Committee, and is past president and chairman of the board of the American Brachytherapy Society. Currently, he is the genito-urinary section editor of the journal Brachytherapy and serves as a manuscript reviewer for 16 peer-reviewed scientific oncologic and urologic journals.

He has published more than 400 original scientific studies on urologic cancer, co-authored two textbooks and lectured across the U.S. and abroad. His research has advanced brachytherapy patient selection and technique, prostate biopsy, treatment and post-operative management. Merrick also has evaluated mechanisms of erectile dysfunction and participated in large studies evaluating investigational drugs for end-stage prostate cancer.

In conjunction with his colleague, Dr. Kent Wallner at the University of Washington, Merrick has completed the three largest prospective randomized prostate brachytherapy trials ever conducted.

Merrick also is director of the Cryosurgery Services at Wheeling Hospital, which is the only program in West Virginia offering a new, minimally invasive therapy for treating kidney cancer. Cryosurgery uses very cold temperatures to treat cancer and is a mainstay therapy for a wide variety of conditions. It is equivalent to surgical removal of part of the kidney for early stage kidney cancer.

Merrick is deeply involved with the Wheeling community. To raise awareness of men’s health issues, Merrick created the Cancer Research Classic (CRC). First held in 2008, the event showcases top high school basketball players from across the country. It also provides an opportunity to promote men’s health awareness. Tournament participants and attendees receive information on prostate cancer, BPH, testicular cancer and overall wellness.

In February 2008, Merrick introduced the Coaches vs. Cancer “Suits and Sneakers Awareness Weekend” to the Wheeling area. The event raises cancer awareness and raises funds for the American Cancer Society (ACS).