Meet Dr. Tom Sheldon!
Dr. Tom Sheldon is a radiation oncologist in Concord, New Hampshire. Dr. Sheldon stays continually busy, splitting his time between taking care of his four children, making oboe reeds, and working as the President of a radiation oncology practice with multiple departments across New Hampshire and Massachusetts. He sees about 250 new patients and their families each year, often treating them with a two to nine week course of external radiation, using a linear accelerator.
Treating prostate cancer is his specialty, and he has even performed over 1,000 prostate seed Implants, a very effective yet uncommon and underutilized treatment. While Sheldon enjoys the physics and constantly changing technical aspects of treatment, he really loves getting to know each patient personally. Despite the short amount of time, he makes an effort to get to know the patients and tries to help with any other health issues. He and his team at the cancer center use all of their services to help out patients who are homeless, have addiction, or any other social issues. As he works for a community cancer center rather than an academic center, assistance like this is much more possible. Helping others in his community is important to he and his team, and they take that role very much to heart.
Favorite current musician?
My favorite oboist is a German woman named Clara Dent.
If you could have any superpower, what would it be?
I'd predict the future and adjust my cancer treatment for the maximum benefit of my patients. I would avoid learning about my own mortality.
If you could visit anywhere in the world, where would it be?
I would travel to Moscow for a tour of KGB headquarters, and have a candid discussion of their Cold War activities. In particular, I would want to know if our CIA misled the public, overstating the Soviets capabilities to forward their defense and intelligence goals. It’s such a fascinating time in our history.
What did you want to do for a living when you were a child?
I was always interested in why concert halls sound the way they do... they spent a lot of money on a poor performing arts center in Milwaukee. My dad would always complain. When I got to college, I checked out Acoustical Engineering, but it was clearly a "dark art." Best I can tell, it still is.
What three items would you bring to a deserted island?
Olive oil, oboe with accessories, and matches.