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1368 Nursing breast cancer patients—how to optimize communication in the first phase of treatment

European Journal of Cancer
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1016/0959-8049(95)96613-i
  • Biology
  • Communication
  • Medicine


Objective To establish a surgical unit for breast cancer patients with focus on communication with patients and relatives in crisis. Background The initial diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer patients take place in a surgical framework. Here the first signs of crisis appear. The patient is confronted with a life threatening disease and has to decide upon a treatment that will change the body image. Method 300 breast cancer patients are received annually. Nurses exclusively take care of breast cancer patients. Traditional boundaries between outpatient clinic and ward have been eliminated. The primary nurse follows the patient during diagnosis, while hospitalized and during the post operation follow up. Patients have easy telephone access to the unit. The primary nurse makes telephone calls’ to the patients and may also make house calls. A series of lectures for breast cancer patients and relatives has been established. Results The success rate for the continuity of the primary nurse is 70%. Two thirds of the patients use open telephone contact. One third of the patients atterd lectures. Conclusion Patients respond positively to communicative intervention un order to counteract doubt, anxietv and isolation.

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