Advancing Hope, Healing and Health
Leading the world in integrative oncology, education, and research since 1975.
When you become sick with disease or illness, it is essential to address the symptoms while also getting to the root cause of what ails you. Discovering why a patient becomes susceptible to a disease in the first place is the goal of the health experts at Riordan Clinic, a not-for-profit, 501(c)(3) academic medical center with locations in Overland Park, Wichita, and Hays, Kansas. Riordan Clinic providers and patients, co-learners, then focus on restoring, improving, and maintaining health by addressing those root causes of the disease. While chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery are the standards of care with conventional cancer treatments, integrative oncology (IO) standards of care expand therapy options to also address adverse side effects like cancer-induced fatigue, pain, nausea, brain fog, weakened immunity, underlying environmental toxicities, hormonal and nutrient imbalances, and whole person cancer care. The goals: better outcomes, fewer side effects, improved quality of life, and hope.
Dr. Lucas Tims, ND, FABNO, Laura Vasquez, MSN, APRN, NP-C, and a team of integrative oncology nurses and medical assistants provide care at the Riordan Clinic Integrative Oncology Campus in Overland Park. Dr. Tims and Laura both have additional training in the Metabolic Approach to Cancer (MATC) protocols placing them among the highest credentialed integrative care providers in the nation. Riordan Clinic Integrative Oncology offers hope to cancer and chronically ill patients in the face of hopelessness.
What is integrative oncology, and why does it matter?
Dr. Lucas: Conventional oncology treats cancer. Integrative oncology goes beyond to treat the patient that has cancer…. whole person cancer care. Each patient is unique. Contributing factors to their cancer are unique. Their family history and genetics are unique. Their environmental exposures and lifestyles are unique. The ways patients respond to conventional and integrative therapies are unique. Integrative oncology creates the foundation for customized care plans to achieve better outcomes, fewer side effects, a better quality of life, and hope.
Laura: Many patients, referred to at the Riordan Clinic as co-learners, give us the privilege of assisting them during their journeys with cancer. They often are at advanced stages of their cancer when they come to us and have undergone one or more courses of conventional oncology treatments. They are tired, sick, weak, in pain, and often lack hope. Daily, we celebrate co-learners achieving positive outcomes such as improved quality of life, hope, risk factor reduction, and even remission. Often our patients achieve a better quality of life than they had prior to them being diagnosed with cancer. That’s the power of integrative oncology.
What led you to pursue a career in integrative oncology?
Dr. Lucas: Throughout medical school, I was uncertain of which specialty to pursue until my wife was diagnosed with thyroid cancer shortly after we started dating. I accompanied her to her appointments, and although she received great treatments, we were both underwhelmed with our experience at the hospital at which she was treated. It was all clinical and cold, where patients felt more like a number. It just wasn’t a good experience in that regard. As someone who was in naturopathic medical school, I had questions. I asked about diet, herbs, and lifestyle with respect to her treatments, and all of my questions were shunned. Their focus was only on surgery and radiation. That did not sit well with us. That was our first experience with cancer treatments, and is the first experience for many. This planted the seed for what I do now. Patients shouldn’t be treated that way. They should be allowed to ask questions and explore alternative options. I wanted to be part of that change, a disruptor of the mainstream model. I then took courses on cancer care, I read a lot on the topic, and I applied for an oncology-focused residency, spending two years at the Cancer Treatment Centers of America. I obtained my foundation in the conventional approaches, but when I became board-specialized in Naturopathic Oncology, I took that knowledge and put into place my ideas and theories. When I came to the Riordan Clinic, I was able to fill in the gaps and get patients the information they needed. Many of them aren’t aware of the options they have. Here, we empower them to address the root causes of cancer. My passion is to support this approach and my patients.
Laura: I am passionate about being a part of a multi-disciplinary team that identifies and addresses the underlying and contributing causes of cancer in our patients. Our care model takes into consideration a co-learner’s physical health as well as their mental and emotional health and strives to heal the whole person. Seeing a co-learner regain their strength, make improvements in their quality of life, and become hopeful again is heartwarming and gratifying. Those outcomes fuel my passion for this field.
Why do patients choose the Riordan Clinic?
Laura: People come from around the world, all 50 states and more than 50 countries, to discover the root causes of their illness, gain knowledge that empowers them to take control of their health, and begin a collaborative relationship with a team to heal. As a result, patients feel heard, validated, and hopeful.
How can people learn more about what the Riordan Clinic offers and the expertise they provide?
Laura: The Real Health Podcast was created by the Riordan Clinic team to share the knowledge and experience of top Integrative Medical professionals. Our goal is to help people understand the basics of better health, give them the tools they need to feel their best, and help them make informed decisions about their own medical care. This is a great resource for patients and prospective patients. It can be accessed at: realhealthpodcast.org.
Dr. Lucas: Riordan Clinic website: riordanclinic.org. Social media sites: Facebook: facebook.com/riordanclinic, Instagram: instagram.com/riordanclinic, Pinterest: pinterest.com/riordanclinic, YouTube: youtube.com/c/RiordanClinicOnline, and LinkedIn: linkedin.com/company/riordan-clinic
Dr. Lucas Tims, known as Dr. Lucas to his patients, is an expert on naturopathic oncology and integrative cancer care and specializes in IV vitamin C, mistletoe, ozone therapy, the immune system, and more. He serves as the Medical Director at the Riordan Clinic in Overland Park, Kansas. Originally from Arkansas, Dr. Tims is a graduate of the University of Arkansas, where he majored in microbiology. He completed his medical training at Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine in Tempe, Arizona before moving to Tulsa, Oklahoma for an oncology-focused residency program at Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA). In 2013, he passed his specialty boards, designating him as a Fellow of the American Board of Naturopathic Oncology (FABNO). He is a member, and board member, of the Oncology Association of Naturopathic Physicians and the Society for Integrative Oncology. Dr. Lucas is a 2020 recipient of the Excellence in Healthcare for Cancer Care recognition by the Wichita Business Journal.
Laura Vasquez is a member of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners, The Institute for Functional Medicine, and The Society for Integrative Oncology. In 2014 she received Saint Luke’s Health System’s Clinical Excellence in Nursing Award. In her role as a cardiology nurse practitioner, Laura was recognized in 2019 as a member of the top 10% of providers nationwide for patient satisfaction by Press Ganey Associates.
For more information on integrative oncology, The Riordan Clinic, Dr. Lucas, and Laura Vasquez visit riordanclinic.org or call 913-745-4757.
The Overland Park campus is located at 6300 W 143rd Street, Suite #205, Overland Park, KS 66223.
The main campus is located in Wichita, Kansas with an additional clinic in Hays, Kansas.