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Breast assessment: making the diagnosis 

Breast assessment: making the diagnosis
Chapter:
Breast assessment: making the diagnosis
Author(s):

James Harvey

, Sue Down

, Rachel Bright-Thomas

, John Winstanley

, and Hugh Bishop

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199215065.003.0006
Page of

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date: 20 August 2019

Breast assessment. Patients referred to a symptomatic breast clinic should have their clinical and imaging investigations performed in one visit. Thus the majority of referrals can be clinically assessed, imaged, reassured and discharged in one visit. This chapter outlines the set-up of a successful diagnostic clinic to improve clinic flow. Referral criteria for the rapid diagnostic/symptomatic breast clinic are given along with those problems which can be managed in primary care. In addition, common waiting time targets are listed (with reference to the quality measures required). The most common problems seen in the breast clinic are described with a thorough explanation of ‘triple assessment’, clinical tips for the trainee and notes on the importance of concordance. The indications for each type of breast imaging are described with the Royal College of Radiology Breast Group guidelines and the advantages and disadvantages of mammography, ultrasound and MRI scan are discussed. A guide is given to selecting the appropriate pathological investigation and, finally, a variety of miscellaneous investigations are mentioned with a guide to further reading.

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