K40 -- October 2010 -- Breast Cancer Education Tool
Intro: "You have a lump and it could be breast cancer." Those are words no woman wants to hear. After the initial shock comes a ton of questions: What does my diagnosis mean? What type of surgery should I have? What about chemo or radiation? It can be overwhelming. That's why doctors at Mayo Clinic developed a new educational tool. It's designed to help women diagnosed with breast cancer get the information they need to help make their journey a little easier.
"It takes a while for it all to sink in."
Earlier this year, Jan Pankratz was diagnosed with stage one breast cancer.
"There's so much information to process. It's hard to even formulate questions when you're so overwhelmed by lots of information."
Dr. Sandhya Pruthi uses a new computerized education tool to help Jan sort it all out.
"I'm going to show you what the term 'ductal' means."
A visual tool to alleviate fear by helping Jan understand her diagnosis, her treatment options and what will happen to her body.
"What I wanted to do was to take away the fear of that overwhelming knowledge. To start with the basics and then teach it in a step-wise process."
Dr. Pruthi tested this tool in a study and found that women who used it had a better understanding of their disease and also had less anxiety. The computerized tool combines video and colored images to explain the pathology of the different breast cancers, staging and grade, and surgical, medical, radiation and reconstructive treatment options.
"This is how tamoxifen works."
"Those terms you're never heard before that mean nothing to you … to tie them visually to what was going on inside you're body was a huge tool for me to make decisions and feel like I was informed and know exactly what I was deciding on."
Providing thorough information to hopefully make the experience of breast cancer a little easier.
For Medical Edge, I'm Vivien Williams.
Dr. Pruthi says this computerized educational tool is not just for patients. It's also for doctors to make sure they communicate and equip breast cancer patients with all the information they need to make informed decisions.
Dr. Pruthi hopes to make this tool available to institutions worldwide.
For more information, visit our website at …
STATIONS: Per the licensing agreement, please provide a link from your station's website to http://www.MayoClinic.org or voice tag "MayoClinic.org" for more information.