The Breast Unit at the Hospital of St John and St Elizabeth has a multidisciplinary team of Consultant Breast Surgeons, Consultant Radiologists, Consultant Plastic Surgeons, Consultant Pathologists, Mammographers and the Hospital Macmillan Breast Care Sister and Nurses who are committed to providing the highest quality breast care.
We recognise that patients are unique individuals with differing physical, emotional and spiritual needs, and will always do our best to meet these needs.
We believe in providing research based information and advice, to enable patients to make informed choices about their treatment and care.
We acknowledge the importance of evidence based practice, and the achievement of this through professional development and education for all members of the Breast Care Team.
The Breast Unit has been accredited by BUPA since 2002. As part of the accreditation agreement, all Breast Unit surgeons are required to fulfill the British Association of Surgical Oncology (BASO) Guidelines when treating patients with breast disease.
We pride ourselves in the quality of our facilities and our professional and caring staff. Over 97% of inpatients questioned, rated our nursing staff as good or excellent for their courtesy, efficiency, care and responsiveness. In the latest audit we had zero cases of MRSA.
The Breast Unit is supported by our well equipped modern Pathology Service which has full unconditional CPA [Clinical Pathology Accreditation(UK) Ltd] accreditation.
The Breast Unit Service
The team of specialist breast surgeons working in partnership with their colleagues in Imaging and Pathology ensure patients are seen and investigated at the same appointment. This provides the patient the reassurance of receiving results on the same day, wherever possible, and continuity of care with the Breast Unit team allowing for fast-track referrals.
At the Hospital of St John & St Elizabeth we work hard to provide the best information and support for people affected by breast cancer. Breast cancer is one of every woman’s greatest fears and because the disease has a high public profile it can bring a lot of anxiety, uncertainty and worries.
The Breast Unit team is aware of the impact diagnosis and treatment of breast conditions can have on the patient and their family, and are committed to a unique philosophy of holistic care that provides practical and emotional support to all involved.
As part of the overall clinical governance programme with the hospital, the Breast Unit team meet on a bi-monthly basis to audit the breast care offered to patients. The multidisciplinary meeting is also a forum for ongoing education and the promotion of ‘best practice’ within the Unit. These activities are summarised in the Breast Unit Annual Report.
Patient involvement is crucial in the provision of a service that meets the ongoing needs of women and men through this difficult time. One way this is achieved is through patient satisfaction questionnaires which are completed at all stages of the patient’s journey from imaging investigations to breast care nurse specialist service.
Working in close association with the Breast Unit Surgeons, the Imaging Unit is committed to providing rapid access to investigations that aid diagnosis and treatment of breast symptoms.
We offer the following services for both routine screening and symptomatic patients
- Full Field Digital Mammography
- Breast Ultrasound
- Fine Needle Aspiration & Core Biopsy
- Stereotactic Localisation
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
- Computed Tomography Scanning (CT)
- Our Full-Field Digital Mammography system offers our patients shorter examination times, lower radiation doses, and excellent image quality. There is also significant improvement in patient comfort as compression times are kept to an absolute minimum.
- Self referral mammography is available for women over the age of 40 who have no obvious breast problems and have not had mammography within the past 12 months. N.B. Women noticing a lump or any breast changes are advised to see their GP or contact The Breast Unit on: 02072664272 or 02078064000 ext. 4439
- Ultrasound is widely used in the assessment of breast conditions. It is recognised to be the better examination for younger women. Our high resolution colour doppler ultrasound scanner is used for detailed examinations of specific breast abnormalities and as guidance for core biopsy and fine needle aspiration of breast abnormalities.
- Breast MRI is a recognised diagnostic investigation for specific breast pathologies, and where clinically indicated is undertaken on our 3T or 1.5T MRI scanner.
- Our multi-slice CT Scanner completes the compressive range of imaging equipment supporting the Breast Unit.
During our Breast Imaging Clinics, Consultant Radiologists with specialist expertise in breast imaging are available to report mammograms and perform ultrasound examinations.
Our team of Mammographers are state-registered radiographers with specialist post-graduate training in breast imaging.
We hope to give you most of your results on the day of your appointment. However, sometimes we need more time to analyse the tests and you maybe asked to come back to the clinic in one week for your results.
Core Biopsy test analysis is a longer process and the results are never available on the same day. Patients will be advised of when their results will be available before they leave the Unit.