One Stop Breast Clinic
Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in the UK. About 1 in 8 women are diagnosed with breast cancer during their life. In rare cases, men can also get breast cancer.
If you are concerned about any breast symptoms, it is important to see a doctor straight away. Most breast symptoms are not caused by cancer, but it is always best for a doctor to check. There is a good chance of recovery if breast cancer is diagnosed at an early stage.
To reduce anxiety and waiting times, Cancer Centre London and nearby Parkside Hospital have set up a One Stop Breast Clinic.
What is the One Stop Breast Clinic?
The One Stop Breast Clinic is an outpatient clinic to investigate any breast symptom, such as:
- a lump or thickening in your breast or armpit
- a change in the size, shape or feel of one or both breasts
- a change in the position of the nipple, such as turning inwards
- fluid (which may be bloodstained) leaking from the nipple
- breast or nipple pain
- skin changes in your breast, such as puckering, dimpling, a rash or redness of the skin
What happens at the One Stop Breast Clinic?
Our experts carry out a detailed assessment in a single visit to the One Stop Breast Clinic. This assessment is made up of three stages:
- Initial assessment: A specialist breast consultant finds out your full medical history, including any risk factors, and examines you.
- Imaging tests: You may have a breast ultrasound scan and, if needed, a mammogram (an X-ray of the breast).
- Further assessment: If we find any abnormal area in your breast, a radiologist can carry out a further assessment. This involves taking a small sample of breast cells or tissue for testing. You may have either:
— a fine needle aspiration, where a very fine needle is used to remove a sample of cells into a syringe
— a core biopsy, where a needle is used to take small pieces of tissue from the lump or abnormal area
These tests are not painful. If you have a core biopsy, you are given a local anaesthetic to make the area numb before the test.
A detailed assessment to give you peace of mind
We can quickly perform all tests needed to assess whether your symptoms are benign (non-cancerous) or malignant (cancerous).
Most people are reassured that their symptoms are benign and leave our clinic with peace of mind. If the tests show any cause for concern, this is usually confirmed within two to five working days. We explain the diagnosis at an appointment and a specialist breast care nurse is there to give you immediate support. After this, we can develop a personalised treatment plan and carry out all tests and treatments onsite.
An area of outstanding practice
The Care Quality Commission has recognised our One Stop Breast Clinic as ‘an area of outstanding practice’. With our one stop approach, we can diagnose breast symptoms quickly and accurately, and then arrange prompt treatment if required.
Our One Stop Breast Clinic is open six days a week with minimal waiting times.
If you are paying for your own treatment, you can refer yourself to the One Stop Breast Clinic. Private medical insurance companies may ask for a referral from your GP.
We also offer a breast screening service. If you are over the age of 40 and do not have symptoms but want peace of mind, you can refer yourself for a digital mammogram. The result is sent to your GP.
If you have any questions about breast cancer or would like to book an appointment with a specialist, please complete this form online or call 020 8247 3351.