About Helen Shih, MD

Helen Shih, MD, MS, MPH, FASTRO is a practicing radiation oncologist at Massachusetts General Hospital. Prior to MGH, Dr. Shih earned her undergraduate degree in biology at Brown University, and medical school education at the University of Pennsylvania where she also earned a Master's Degree in Cell & Molecular Biology. She completed an internship year at Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak, MI before radiation oncology residency at MGH. She has a Master's in Public Health from the Harvard School of Public Health. 

Dr. Shih remained on staff at MGH after her training and is the Director of the Central Nervous System & Eye Services. She cares for the full range of patients with benign to malignant diagnoses and both primary and metastatic diseases. She is a Professor of Radiation Oncology at Harvard Medical School and is the Medical Director of the MGH Proton Therapy Centers. 

Dr. Shih’s research interests are in clinical and translational efforts to better define the role of radiation therapy in the management of her broad spectrum of patients. Subspecialty interests include improving our understanding and use of proton therapy and understanding the effects of ionizing radiation on normal tissues, primarily the brain, and how best to reduce the risk of radiation-associated injury. Yet another area of interest is addressing drug addiction through education to reduce stigma, novel research efforts towards better prevention and treatment, and advancing community-based services. 

Clinical Interests:

Treats:

Languages:

Locations

Mass General Cancer Center: Proton Therapy Center
55 Fruit St.
Yawkey Center for Outpatient Care
Boston, MA 02114
Phone: 617-724-1298
Fax: 617-724-9532

Medical Education

  • MD, Univ. of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
  • Residency, Massachusetts General Hospital

American Board Certifications

  • Radiation Oncology, American Board of Radiology

Accepted Insurance Plans

Note: This provider may accept more insurance plans than shown; please call the practice to find out if your plan is accepted.


Research

Dr. Shih's research interests are in clinical and translational efforts to improve the care and quality of life of brain tumor patients. Specifically, she works to better define the role of radiation therapy. One subspecialty interest is proton therapy and improving our understanding and use of this technology. Another interest is in understanding the effects of ionizing radiation on normal tissues, primarily the brain, and how best to reduce the risk of radiation-associated injury. Yet another area of interest is understanding the effects of drug addictions on the brain and developing more effective and curative therapies.

Publications

  • 1. Saraf A, Pike LRG, Franck KH, Horick NK, Yeap BY, Fullerton BC, Wang IS, Abazeed ME, McKenna MJ, Mehan WA, Plotkin SR, Loeffler JS, Shih HA. Fractionated proton beam radiation therapy and hearing preservation for vestibular schwannoma: preliminary analysis of a prospective phase 2 clinical trial. Neurosurgery. 2022 May 1;90(5):506-514. PMID: 35229827

    2. Lee G, Lamba N, Niemierko A, Kim DK, Chapman PH, Loeffler JS, Curry WT, Martuza RL, Oh KS, Barker FG II, Shih HA. Adjuvant radiotherapy versus surveillance following surgical resection of atypical meningiomas. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2021;109(1):252-266. Epub 2020 Aug 8. PMID: 32777336

    3. Lebow ES, Hwang WL, Zieminski S, Wang Y, Niemierko A, Mehan WA Jr, Oh K, Khandekar M, Willers H, Shih HA. Early experience with hippocampal avoidance whole brain radiation therapy and simultaneous integrated boost for brain metastases. J Neurooncol. 2020;148(1), 81-88. Epub 2020 Apr 19. PMID: 32307637

    4. Niyazi M, Niemierko A, Paganetti H, S?hn M, Schapira E, Goldberg S, Adams A, Kim V, Oh KS, Hwang WL, Lu H-M, Belka C, Busse PM, Loeffler JS, Shih HA. Volumetric and actuarial analysis of brain necrosis in proton therapy using a novel mixture cure model. Radiother Oncol. 2020;142:154-161. Epub 2019 Sep 25. PMID: 31563411

    5. Tabrizi S, Yeap BY, Sherman JC, Nachtigall LB, Colvin MK, Dworkin M, Fullerton BC, Daartz J, Royce TJ, Oh KS, Batchelor TT, Curry WT, Loeffler JS, Shih HA. Long-term outcomes and late adverse effects of a prospective study on proton therapy for patients with low-grade glioma. Radiother Oncol. 2019;137:95-101. Epub 2019 May 10. PMID: 31082632

    6. Li PC, Liebsch NJ, Niemierko A, Giantsoudi D, Lessell S, Fullerton BC, Adams J, Shih HA. Radiation tolerance of the optic pathway in patients treated with proton and photon radiotherapy. Radiother Oncol. 2019;131:112-119. Epub 2018 Dec 31. PMID: 30773177

    7. Sanford NN, Yeap BY, Larvie M, Daartz J, Munzenrider JE, Liebsch NJ, Fullerton B, Pan E, Loeffler JS, Shih HA. Prospective, randomized study of radiation dose escalation with combined proton-photon therapy for benign meningiomas. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2017;99(4):787-796. Epub 2017 Jul 12. PMID: 28865924

    8. Shih HA, Sherman JC, Nachtigall LB, Colvin MK, Fullerton BC, Daartz J, Winrich BK, Batchelor TT, Thornton LT, Mancuso SM, Saums MK, Oh KS, Curry WT, Loeffler JS, Yeap BY. Proton therapy for low-grade gliomas: Results from a prospective trial. Cancer. 2015;121(10):1712-1719. Epub 2015 Jan 13. PMID: 25585890

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