What can I expect at my first clinic visit?

You will be seen by a physician or physician assistant who will take your medical history, perform a physical exam and review any imaging or biopsies you may have had done at another facility. They will then recommend the next step in evaluation which may include: performing a needle biopsy, ordering breast imaging, or repeat physical exam at the next clinic visit. If indicated they will also refer you to see one of the breast surgeons.

 I’ve just been diagnosed with breast cancer. What can I expect during my first visit with a surgeon?

The first visit with a surgeon allows you to meet the doctor. Your doctor will review your medical history, perform a physical exam, review medical imaging, tests and biopsy results and establish a plan of care. A needle biopsy may be performed during this visit and additional imaging or tests may be ordered if necessary.

Because John H. Stroger Jr. Hospital is a teaching hospital it is likely that a medical student or surgical resident may see you first during your visit. Afterward, the student or resident will review your medical history with one of the physician or physician assistants. We find that participating in medical education is rewarding for patients and those in training and hope you do too!

What do I need to bring to my clinic visit?

  1. Imaging: Including a report and a CD of any mammograms or ultrasounds you have had at another facility. Please do not send these records in the mail. It is best to personally bring them to clinic and give them to a Clinic H staff member.
  2. Biopsy: If you had a biopsy at another facility you will need to bring the pathology report and glass slides with the biopsy tissue so that our pathologist can review the specimen.
  3. It may be necessary to have additional imaging and/or biopsy before your surgeon can recommend a treatment plan.
  4. If you would like a family member or friend to come to the clinic with you it can be helpful. There is a lot of information given and sometimes having an extra person can help!

Can I participate in clinical trials and other research?

The physicians in the Breast Program are dedicated to the constant advancement of patient care. With this in mind, we participate in both national clinical trials and departmental research studies. If your physician thinks that a study may be appropriate for you, they will explain the study for you and connect you to those in charge of the study. It is always up to you if you would like to participate or not.