02 Oct 2022

Tipperary breast cancer patients urged to attend talk in Limerick hospital

Tipperary breast cancer patients urged to attend talk in Limerick hospital

Kim Wheeler, Senior Specialist Breast Radiographer, University Hospital Limerick, and Mr Ashish Lal, Consultant Breast Surgeon, University Hospital Limerick, in the Symptomatic Breast Unit ahead of th

University Hospital Limerick will host a free talk for breast cancer patients on Tuesday, February 20, at 6pm in the Clinical Education and Research Centre, UHL.

Speakers will include Ciara McNamara, breast cancer survivor; Ashish Lal, consultant breast surgeon, University Hospital Limerick; Kim Wheeler, senior specialist breast radiographer, University Hospital Limerick; Meadbh MacSweeney, clinical lymphoedema nurse specialist, University Hospital Limerick.

Those who attend the lecture will leave with a better understanding of what to expect of breast cancer services and the patient journey.

The lecture is the latest in a series of public talks that form part of UL Hospitals Healthy Ireland programme, which commits the group to greater public engagement and more educational events.

The CERC Building is located adjacent to the new Emergency Department / Critical Care Block at UHL. For ease of access, use car parks two and three if arriving by car.

Members of the public who attend the lecture will leave with a better understanding of what to expect of breast cancer services and the patient journey.

“We want to tell the public what we do in the Symptomatic Breast Unit and what the journey is like for them once they are referred here. Some of the specialist team will talk people through some of the more common things we do here,” said Mr Lal.

“We will break down for them how radiology works, for example, and we hope to remove whatever fear factor is there. We will also go through one of the more common post-operative complications in lymphoedema. This is actually a poorly understood phenomenon and our lymphoedema specialist will go through it, explain what exactly it is and what patients can do about it to counter any misconception that if you do get it, it is the end of the world and nothing can be done.”

The Symptomatic Breast Unit in UHL is one of the eight nationally designated centres and offers all aspects of breast and breast cancer care including triple assessment, breast reconstruction and oncoplastic surgery, and dedicated family history clinics. Breast cancer services in UHL include a dedicated Breast Medical Oncology Unit and Radiotherapy delivered in the UHL Medical Oncology Unit and the Mater Private Radiotherapy on site.

The service is centred in the Symptomatic Breast Unit, which opened on the Fourth Floor of the Leben Building at UHL in 2016. The unit includes two ultrasound and two mammography suites with cutting edge diagnostics; consultation rooms; a multidisciplinary team conference room; a prosthesis fitting room; a family room; administrative offices and a quiet room where women can retire for cancer consultations and information.

Activity continues to increase year-on-year. There were 7,245 attendances (new and return) to the Breast Clinic in 2016 compared to 6,726 attendances in 2015. A total of 201 breast cancers were diagnosed in 2016.

Prof Colette Cowan, CEO, UL Hospitals Group, has encouraged members of the public to attend next Tuesday night.

“Our Healthy Ireland strategy identified a need to engage more with the public around health promotion and prevention of illness. We hope that these lectures will also provide a more convivial atmosphere for people to engage with us away from the clinics and to learn more about the services here on their doorstep. We hope that people who attend the lecture will come away assured that services and outcomes for breast cancer patients continue to improve,” Prof Cowan said.

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