A Community of Care: St. Joseph Innovates at its Breast Cancer Center
Kira Wendorf, MD Medical Director, Breast Care Services, The Breast Care Center at St. Joseph Hospital
Q: What new advances/technologies are used at St. Joseph Hospital’s Breast Care Center?
Wendorf: “The Breast Care Center at St. Joseph Hospital is one of only a few imaging centers in the state of New Hampshire to offer supplemental ultrasound screening for women with dense breast tissue, which may limit mammographic sensitivity and increase a woman’s risk for developing breast cancer. Our Breast Care Center has implemented cutting edge technology, such as 3D mammography, and we look forward to implementing a new Affirm biopsy table soon, which will allow for a more comfortable, shorter and less invasive biopsy experience.
“In addition, St. Joseph Hospital’s leadership team is fully committed to ensuring technologists and physicians regularly attend national breast cancer conferences to be sure they’re informed of and educated on the very latest research and developments.”
Q: In what ways does St. Joseph Hospital offer a ‘community of care?’ How is it more than a treatment facility?
Wendorf: “Our team, which includes a fellowship-trained breast radiologist, highly-skilled surgeons and experienced oncologists enjoy working collaboratively to deliver our patients the safest, most advanced care possible. The Breast Care Center offers support and educational programs dedicated to providing women with the latest information they need. It includes:
• Counseling and support groups for patients, spouses and families
• Breast health awareness programs
• Community education programs
• Spiritual care and counseling
• Nutritional education and counseling
A variety of support services, including: Look Good Feel Better; Breast and Ovarian Cancer Support Group; Yoga for Cancer Patients
Q: What types of complementary therapies are available for patients, and how does this benefit their treatment?
“Look Good Feel Better is a non-medical, brand-neutral public service program that teaches beauty techniques to women with cancer to help them manage the appearance-related side effects of cancer treatment. The program includes lessons on skin and nail care, cosmetics, wigs and turbans, accessories and styling, helping people with cancer to find some normalcy in a life that is by no means normal. The program is open to all women with cancer who are undergoing chemotherapy, radiation, or other forms of treatment.
“Just Between Us, Breast and Ovarian Cancer Support Group is for women at any stage of their breast and ovarian cancer journey. A time for sharing and caring, to talk about issues that matter most. Meetings are held monthly.
“YogaCaps: Therapeutic Yoga for Cancer Patients is specifically designed by YogaCaps, Inc., a non-profit that supports people living with cancer. Participants learn seated yoga poses to help relieve tension and anxiety, rebuild strength, and restore range of motion. They also learn to manage the side effects of cancer treatment and medication as naturally as possible.”a