Skip to main content

Comprehensive Cancer Centers shared news that Nicholas Vogelzang, MD, a physician and research scientist at the oncology care practice, has recently passed away.

Comprehensive Cancer Centers is sad to share the news that Nicholas Vogelzang, MD, a long-time physician and groundbreaking researcher at the oncology care practice, recently passed away. Dr. Vogelzang was beloved by the Comprehensive team, physicians who referred their patients to him for life-saving care, as well as the many patients who are alive and thriving today, due to Dr. Vogelzang’s relentless advocacy on their behalf.

“Dr. Vogelzang was a beloved leader in oncology, Las Vegas and in the hearts of every single person he touched in his professional endeavors,” said Jon Bilstein, executive director of Comprehensive. “This is a difficult moment for so many, but we must remember and cherish everything that this remarkable man brought to medicine and our community. We will honor the legacy of our cherished friend and colleague by continuing to push toward a cure for cancer. We will miss him dearly.”

Photo of Nicholas J. Vogelzang, MD, FASCO, FACP

Nicholas J. Vogelzang, MD, FASCO, FACP

Respect for Dr. Nicholas Vogelzang extends far beyond the Las Vegas Valley, with patients who came from all over the world to seek his compassionate care. Respect for his work, and his friendship and mentorship were also shared by those who called him a colleague here in Southern Nevada.

“Nicholas Vogelzang was our practice’s chairman of medical oncology and he preserved and extended the lives of thousands of Southern Nevadans and those who sought his meticulous care from throughout the United States and world,” said Andrew M. Cohen, MD, a Comprehensive Radiation Oncologist and Practice President. “Dr. Vogelzang led and participated in countless clinical trials in genitourinary malignancies, mesothelioma, as well as trials focused on new therapies for patients with metastatic kidney, bladder and prostate cancer, leading research findings and advances that have changed cancer care for the better globally. He will be greatly missed by all of us at Comprehensive.”

Respect for Dr. Vogelzang extends beyond Southern Nevada, with the following statements shared by those who were proud to call him a colleague during his career:

Sonali Smith, MD, the Elwood V. Jensen Professor and chief of the Section of Hematology/Oncology at the University of Chicago, notes about Dr. Nicholas Vogelzang:

“Those of us who knew Dr. Vogelzang remember him as a trusted colleague with incredible warmth and a larger-than-life personality, as well as mentor and friend to many. He was known for his very direct, personal, and passionate interactions with patients.”

In 1982 Dr. Vogelzang was recruited by Harvey Golomb, MD, to join the faculty in the Section of Hematology/Oncology in the Department of Medicine at the University of Chicago. Dr. Golomb had the following to say about Dr. Vogelzang:

“I hired Nick in the early 1980s; he turned out to be an excellent clinician who was well liked by his patients and his peers. He developed our GU oncology program and received referrals from throughout the country. He was a hard worker and very attentive to his patients. He will be missed by his friends and former colleagues at UCMC.”

Bradley C. Leibovich, MD, chair of the board of directors at KCA, as well as chair and a consultant in the Department of Urology at Mayo Clinic, said that Vogelzang was “truly a giant” in GU oncology.

“He distinguished himself by always going above and beyond for his patients and colleagues with compassion and tremendous generosity of his time and wisdom,” Leibovich said. “When you consider those he cared for over the years and those he has taught who will continue to do great things because of the knowledge he imparted on them, he has and will continue to impact countless lives.”

Charles D. Blanke, MD, SWOG group chair and professor of medicine with Knight Cancer Institute at Oregon Health & Science University, wrote a tribute to his friend and colleague in August 2022. Dr. Vogelzang went into hospice care a few weeks earlier.

“He is warm, caring, professional, and knowledgeable to a fault,” Blanke wrote. “He is an amazing physician and researcher.

“I turned to Nick when a personal friend developed a cancer within his area of expertise. Although most of us are fairly willing to give advice, his thoroughness of follow-up on my friend’s case was a brilliant model for physicians everywhere,” Blanke added. “His response wasn’t just routine or what was expected — he truly wanted to help this patient he had never met and went out of his way to make sure the patient and family knew every possible option for care. Of course, he offered to see my friend the next day. That warmth and thoroughness have helped make him much loved among both patients and colleagues throughout the oncology community.”

A dedicated researcher, Dr. Vogelzang led multiple groundbreaking clinical trials at Comprehensive Cancer Centers aimed at identifying new therapies and treatment approaches for cancer patients, investigating new therapies for GU cancers such as metastatic kidney cancer, prostate cancer, and metastatic bladder cancer, as well as for mesothelioma.

Dr. Vogelzang became the first editor of the Textbook of Genitourinary Oncology, the first major textbook to focus on the field of GU oncology from the combined perspectives of the molecular biologist, pathologist, oncologist, and urologist, remaining its lead editor until recently. Dr. Vogelzang was a co-founder of the Kidney Cancer Association (KCA) in 1990 and served on its Board of Directors from its founding until his recent retirement in March of this year.

In 2004, Dr. Vogelzang moved to Nevada and became Head of Genitourinary Oncology and Clinical Professor of Medicine for the University of Nevada School of Medicine in Las Vegas and Reno. Dr. Vogelzang joined Comprehensive Cancer Centers in 2009 as a medical oncologist and research scientist.

Dr. Vogelzang would later also serve as the Chair and Medical Director of the Developmental Therapeutics and Genitourinary Committees for US Oncology Research.

Dr. Vogelzang was a noted lecturer who authored or co-authored over 400 journal articles, in addition to numerous book chapters and abstracts. He was the principal or co-principal investigator in multiple clinical trials that led to the regulatory approval of several new cancer therapeutics including atezolizumab, pemetrexed, abiraterone, mitoxantrone, and radium 223 dichloride. And, Dr. Vogelzang’s work and progress in cancer research has been featured in news outlets such as 60 Minutes, The New England Journal of Medicine, Nature, USA Today and The New York Times.

But most importantly, Dr. Vogelzang was highly regarded by his peers and patients alike in the cancer community for his clinical practice, research efforts, and career-long dedication to advancing cancer therapies and treatments. Dr. Vogelzang built an amazing legacy in oncology research and care, one that can be measured in lives transformed, among both his colleagues and his patients.

His lifelong focus on mentorship impacted the lives of countless peers, as Dr. Vogelzang engaged his fellow researchers and clinicians with warmth and thoroughness throughout his career, furthering the work of medical oncology along the way.

Comprehensive Cancer Centers Can Help

Physicians at Comprehensive Cancer Centers provide a variety of treatment options for cancers including chemotherapy, radiation therapy and world-class clinical research and immunotherapy.  To schedule an appointment with the team at Comprehensive, please call 702-952-3350.

The content in this post is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Close Menu