Bart Lee Scott, MD
Once the patient, now the physician
For many people who decide to become doctors, it’s a personal preference due to an affinity for math or science, or the desire to help others. For Dr. Bart Lee Scott, it was even more personal than that. His mother was diagnosed with breast cancer while he was in high school.
“After watching her go through what she did, and seeing the doctors work with her, I knew that I wanted to become a doctor, too,” says Dr. Scott.
He began medical school at the University of South Alabama School of Medicine. After completing his first year, his mother passed away. In a cruel twist of fate during his second year, Dr. Scott was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
“I have first-hand experience about the benefits of people participating in clinical trials,” he says.
Hodgkin’s lymphoma used to carry a high mortality rate. The treatment once used, called MOPP – Mechlorethamine (nitrogen mustard), Oncovin (vincristine), and Procarbazine, and Prednisone – worked on the cancer but had a high rate of secondary malignancies. Because of clinical trials, better treatments have been developed leading to better outcomes.
“I decided to specialize in leukemia during my residency training. I was able to connect with those patients,” Dr. Scott says. “I even remember my very first leukemia patient during my first year of residency. He was 19 years old and presented with frequent bleeding and bruising after playing basketball.”
Dr. Scott is developing three protocols for Myelodysplasia or myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). “The goal is to improve the care of patients with MDS and leukemia,” says Dr. Scott.
Clinical research proponent
The term "myelodysplastic syndrome" describes diseases of the bone marrow that are generally associated with anemia (with or without low platelet and white blood cell counts) and characterized by a tendency to develop into acute myeloid leukemia. MDS is sometimes referred to as "preleukemia." In the United States, between 13,000 and 20,000 patients are diagnosed with MDS every year. The average age of patients is 65-70, but the disease can occur at any age. In the vast majority of patients, we do not know the cause of the disease, though MDS can develop in patients previously treated with chemotherapy or radiation.
Because of clinical trials, there have been three new MDS drugs approved for use by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration in just the last year and a half. “Things are moving very rapidly,” says Dr. Scott. “Patient groups are pushing for research and that’s good.”
But it’s difficult to get patients to participate in clinic trials, according to Dr. Bart. “I think there is the misconception that they won’t get the best treatment, when in fact, patients get far superior treatment compared to those who are not participating in a trial. There is very close follow-up when people are in a study. There are no placebos. Study patients are getting the very latest treatments available and they’re helping others in the future while they’re also helping themselves.”
When he isn’t seeing patients, Dr. Scott can be found reading up on history or other countries – he’s an avid traveler. His library contains a comprehensive collection of travel books, and comic books, as well.
“I love the summer in Seattle,” he says, and when he isn’t vacationing abroad he often plays tennis on the weekends.
Bart Lee Scott, MDDr. Scott is a medical oncologist specializing in the treatment of patients with Myelodysplastic Syndrome and Myeloproliferative Neoplasms.
Patient Care Philosophy:
Patient education is key so that the patient can guide the physician to meet his or her needs.
- Assistant Member, Clinical Research Division, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
- Assistant Professor of Medicine, Division of Oncology, University of Washington
- Director of Hematology and Hematologic Malignancies, Seattle Cancer Care Alliance
Myelodysplastic Syndrome and Myeloproliferative Neoplasms
Education And Training
- University of South Alabama, Mobile, AL, School of Medicine, 1991-1996
- Residency: Johns Hopkins Hospital, Internal Medicine, 1996-1999
- Fellowship: University of Washington, Seattle, WA, Medical Oncology, 1999-2000
- Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA, 2001-2004
More InformationFor more information about Dr. Bart Lee Scott's clinical and research expertise, click here.
- Azacitidine +/- Gemtuzumab for Post-Transplant Relapse for MDS, CMML and AML (FHCRC-2240)
- Reduced Intensity Conditioning vs.Myeloablative Conditioning for AML or MDS (2497)
- ON 01910.Na for Refractory Myelodysplastic Syndrome (2534)
- INC424 for Polycythemia Vera (2490)
- Chemotherapy for MDS Patients Prior Donor Stem Cell Transplant (2661)