Saturday 17 March 2018

Growing services need for survivors of breast cancer

Eilish O'Regan

Eilish O'Regan

Growing numbers of women are now surviving early stage breast cancer and there is a need for more "survivorship care".

A study of 44 such women found that the most common physical needs they had were fatigue (51pc), and second cancer concerns (69pc).

The most common psychological concern was worry about recurrence.

The authors of the study in Tallaght Hospital and Waterford Regional point out that hospitals are not always best placed to provide ongoing care to the growing number of survivors who have completed treatment.

"As the number of breast cancer survivors continues to grow, a model of comprehensive care is needed to address the specialised needs of this cohort of patients," said the study.

It suggests that "a considerable proportion of survivorship care be delivered by community-based services.

"Primary care expertise in survivorship care could be supported by the facilitation of direct communication between GPs and cancer specialists as well as further training and access to services."

Irish Independent

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