One Stop Breast Clinic
With nearly 60,000 people being diagnosed annually, breast cancer is the most common cancer in women in the UK. With fear playing a key factor in why women don’t seek help and this feeling further heightened by the idea of lengthy waiting times, Parkside Hospital has implemented the ultimate ‘One Stop’ approach – offering patients rapid advice, diagnosis and treatment for breast cancer including breast reconstruction, all in one location.
What is the ‘One Stop Breast Clinic’?
This is an outpatient clinic specifically for patients with any breast related symptom whether this be a worrisome lump, breast asymmetry, nipple retraction, nipple discharge, breast pain or skin changes. The ‘One Stop Breast Clinic’ involves a triple assessment offering a thorough and accurate breast cancer diagnosis. The entire process can take less than an hour, making it ideal for those busy professionals including mothers and carers who want all diagnostic assessments and tests completed in the one visit.
So what happens during the appointment?
A triple assessment is carried out:
- Upon arrival, you will be seen by the specialist breast surgeon who will perform a clinical assessment comprising a full history and examination to guide the necessary imaging.
- A consultant breast radiologist will then perform a breast ultrasound scan and a mammogram (for age 40+).
- Using local anaesthesia and under image guidance the radiologist will then carry out the pathological assessment involving a fine needle aspiration or core biopsy.
There is strong evidence that when all three of the above modalities are concordant, the degree of diagnostic accuracy exceeds 95%.
During this ‘One Stop’ approach, the service can quickly assess whether a lump is benign or malignant, reassuring 90% of patients immediately that their lump is benign and no further diagnosis intervention is required.
Should the investigations reveal a more sinister cause of symptoms, this is usually confirmed within 2-5 working days and the patient will be informed of the diagnosis during a consultation in the presence of a breast care nurse. The findings will be discussed and a personalised treatment plan specific to you will be formulated of which the relevant treatment course can be fully carried out on site.
The ‘One Stop Breast Clinic’ at Parkside Hospital has been recognised as ‘an area of outstanding practice’ by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) and aims to cause as little disruption to a patient’s day as possible, offering the ultimate one stop approach to reduce fear and provide early diagnosis and the prompt treatment women need.
You don’t have to be symptomatic for a triple assessment, if you just want ease of mind and are non-symptomatic; you can self-refer if you’re over the age of 40. Call 020 8971 8026 to book your appointment. Please see our Breast Clinic page for more information.