Dr. Kalyan Banda is a medical oncologist specializing in breast cancer at Seattle Cancer Care Alliance (SCCA).
My goal is to help patients with breast cancer live life to the fullest. This involves integrating cutting-edge treatments, with a deep scientific knowledge of the disease and an understanding of the hopes and dreams of patients in short, practicing the art and science of medicine at its very best.
- Clinical Instructor, Division of Oncology, University of Washington School of Medicine
- MD: Christian Medical College & Hospital, Vellore, India
- Residency: Internal Medicine, University of California San Diego
- Fellowship: Hematology and Medical Oncology, University of Washington Medicine and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
Through a series of strange events, I started at a top law school. It was a fantastic place with dynamic ideas and great personalities. Nevertheless, I was haunted by the great words of Dr. Tinsley Harrison that I read in one of my father’s medical textbooks: “No greater opportunity, responsibility, or obligation can fall to the lot of a human being than to become a physician. In the care of the suffering, he needs technical skill, scientific knowledge, and human understanding. He who uses these with courage, with humility, and with wisdom will provide a unique service for his fellow man and will build an enduring edifice of character within himself. The physician should ask of his destiny no more than this; he should be content with no less.” To possess such a gift and use it to benefit people would be an honor and privilege, I thought. It was a calling that led me to quit law school and go to medical school.
In my third year of medical school, I had the opportunity to shadow a hematology oncologist. His compassion and clinical skills were admirable, and I decided I wanted to follow in his footsteps. Modern oncology is a challenging specialty; in the care of particularly sick individuals, a physician needs to combine immense empathy with a fantastic grasp of basic sciences and clinical medicine. This discipline demands the perception of an artist and the perseverance of a scientist, a challenge that I relish.
This is an inspiring time to be in oncology, with unprecedented advances. I hope to see cures that will relegate breast cancer to an “insignificant nuisance” that will not interfere in the pursuit of patients’ dreams. In addition, I hope to see new treatments that will prevent early-stage breast cancer from ever recurring.
Outside of work, I enjoy exploring Seattle and the Northwest. I also enjoy spending time with my wife, who is also a physician, our infant son and our Ragdoll cat. My wife and I are avid concertgoers, culinary enthusiasts and literature lovers.