No More Sleepless NightsSM
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Although every woman knows the importance of her annual mammogram, for many the prospect evokes fear about what might be found. News of an abnormal mammogram or discovering a breast lump understandably evokes anxiety and concern. Mammography often involves additional views and studies and, for some, a biopsy. Although the overwhelming majority of women receive a negative result, the process produces ongoing anxiety.
At The Breast Center at UM St. Joseph Medical Center, Dr. Michael J. Schultz envisioned a different experience for women. He developed the “No More Sleepless NightsSM” program, a fast track to treatment program to help alleviate that fear. Women are scheduled the day they call us with an abnormal mammogram or lump. In fact, within 24 hours women can receive the results of a biopsy, if needed, and be well on their way to a comprehensive, multidisciplinary treatment plan with our expert team of physicians.
No More Sleepless NightsSM is a unique program to fast-track the diagnostic and treatment services a woman needs when she has an abnormal mammogram or discovers a breast lump. The program reduces a typically lengthy period to just a day. Usually, a pathology report and follow-up consultation can be obtained within approximately 24 hours after a biopsy. In the event the biopsy demonstrates a malignancy, patients have all the necessary diagnostic and treatment facilities in The Breast Center’s compassionate, patient-centered environment. The services include:
Additional views, ultrasound
Consultation with breast surgeon
Biopsy if needed
Results and follow-up consultation usually within 24 hours
Availability of full diagnostic evaluation
Expert treatment, multidisciplinary approach
The Breast Center also offers a high risk breast cancer screening program to help identify patients that are at a higher risk level for developing breast cancer in their lifetime. The Breast Center team works with individuals that are found to be at high risk to establish routine monitoring and identify risk-reduction strategies. Click here to access the high risk breast cancer screening assessment, and take the first step to take control of your breast health.
Customized Treatment For Each Breast Cancer Patient
One Thanksgiving, Carolyn Bublitz had a breast biopsy on Wednesday and waited the entire holiday weekend for results from a facility that was not UM St. Joseph Medical Center. “My family and I spent the holiday worried,” recalls Bublitz. Her abnormal mammogram and additional breast studies had already taken weeks.
She received her breast cancer diagnosis on Tuesday, and a friend immediately recommended Dr. Michael Schultz, director of UM St. Joseph’s Breast Center. Dr. Schultz saw her the very next day.
Her breast cancer turned out to be somewhat complicated, requiring an extensive work-up and evaluation. “I had two different kinds of cancer tumors in both breasts,” she explains.
At UM St. Joseph’s Cancer Institute, each patient is presented at a multidisciplinary conference where all the experts—surgeon, oncologist, radiation oncologist, radiologist, pathologist, plastic surgeon and nurse navigator—discuss each patient and customize a treatment plan.
Although Bublitz could have had a bilateral mastectomy with reconstruction, Schultz explains, “After additional consultations with Carolyn, we came up with a unique paradigm, much better tailored to her specific needs. By utilizing a novel approach in which chemotherapy is given prior to surgery, we offered Carolyn lumpectomies—breast conservation type surgery.”
“Following completion of chemotherapy, she was ready for surgery, avoiding mastectomy,” says Schultz. “I got superb results from the chemo, which shrunk the tumors,” she adds. Her surgery will be followed by radiation treatment and nine months of Herceptin therapy.
“I don’t mind driving up and down the Beltway to St. Joseph,” says Bublitz, who lives in Columbia, Md. “My confidence in St. Joe’s team is well-deserved!”