Breast cancer care

With our pioneering breast screening service at Gateshead we hope to diagnose breast cancer quickly, which is the key to defeating the disease which affects one in every ten women in our region.

If you are diagnosed with breast cancer, we understand how anxious this time can be, so we aim to make any treatment and your contact with us as easy and consistent as possible

Our Breast Care Nurse (BCN) specialists have expertise and knowledge in breast care and core members of the multi-disciplinary team that will oversee your treatment. There are three symptomatic BCN’s and two Screening BCN’s based at the QEH site Breast Screening Unit.

Our BCN’s provide a service to 450-500 new breast cancer patients from the screening and symptomatic service per year.

The BCN specialists provide advice, support and information to breast cancer patients and their families from diagnosis and throughout their pathway. Our Breast Cancer nurses can also help if you show any signs of anxiety and depression throughout your diagnosis and treatment, and can provide emotional support or refer you to other health care professionals if required.

The BCN will assess each patients needs for information (written and verbal) and provide comprehensive information/ advice regarding their condition.

Our Breast Cancer Nurses also provide specialist care/advice in:

  • Seroma drainage
  • Wound care
  • Reconstructive surgery
  • Lymphoedema
  • Acupuncture service
  • Health promotion
  • Prosthesis/bra advice
  • Headscarves

We also provide support services including:

  • Monthly young women’s support group
  • Monthly secondary support group
  • Quarterly reconstruction support group
  • Quarterly breast cancer support/information meeting

Provide nurse-led services:

  • Follow up clinic
  • New patient symptomatic clinics
  • Lymphoedema
  • Nipple/areola micro-pigmentation (tattooing)

The BCN’s attend the weekly MDT meeting and contribute to discussions regarding patients. The BCN’s also contribute to planning and delivering education locally and nationally, promotes evidence based care and regularly monitors services they provide by compiling regular patient questionnaires. The BCN’s work closely with other support services i.e. Macmillan service, psychology service, GP's, chemotherapy unit, oncology service and refers as appropriate.

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