One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some point in their life. No one wants to be "the one", but if they are and are a patient at Avera McKennan they can rest assured a team of doctors takes a team approach in their treatment plan.
Nancy Olson from Sioux Falls is on home stretch of her breast cancer treatment that has included two surgeries, chemo therapy, and radiation.
Nancy says, "I'm feeling quite well. I'm finishing up my radiation right now."
Nancy has been a regular "mammogramer", as she puts it, for 25 years. That's how her initial diagnosis started when her mammogram came back abnormal in February.
Each new breast cancer patient's case is reviewed during a breast conference (held at the Avera Cancer Institute) every Wednesday morning at 7:00. Avera's interdisciplinary team of medical and radiation oncologists, surgeons, plastic surgeons, radiologists, pathologists, primary care physicians, mammography technologists, and nurses discuss each and every case together to come up with the best treatment plan for that woman.
General Surgeon and Nancy's surgeon through the Main McGreevy Clinic Avera Dr. Wade Dosch explains it this way, "It's designed to expedite their care and really coordinate so we have all the physicians caring for that patient on the same page knowing exactly what's next and what that role will be."
Nancy says, "At the time I was given my diagnosis of breast cancer my husband was also diagnosed with prostate cancer. We felt like our world was instantly turned upside down. The fact that the breast conference was available made things move along so quickly, I felt so confident that I had this team of people advising me. It took so much stress out of a very stressful time in our lives."
When you're the one fighting cancer, you want to believe everyone in their power is working to cure you. Here's proof, at Avera McKennan, they are.
Some patients will have their case go before the breast conference more than once if surgeons discover that the cancer is more advanced than thought or if they want to consult with "the team" about how to proceed on the treatment plan.