Same-day breast biopsy program celebrates 10 years

When Dr. Emily Sedgwick, associate professor of radiology, first rolled out the same-day breast biopsy program at the Breast Care Center at Baylor Clinic, part of the Lester and Sue Smith Breast Center, in 2007, she had no idea the growth and impact it would have in the years to come.

“The success we experienced at Baylor Clinic was amazing,” Sedgwick said. “Seeing what a program like this could do for patients, Lester and Sue Smith challenged and encouraged me to expand the program into the Harris Health Smith Clinic. And with their support and ability to affect change, we were able to begin operations there in 2012.”

The goal of the same-day breast biopsy program is to provide a sustainable same-day mammographic workup and breast biopsy process to increase access to breast cancer care, and to reduce anxiety in the time between an abnormal screening and biopsy.

“In addition to drastically improving the wait time between appointments, the same-day breast biopsy program has minimized additional screenings and improved efficiency, thereby reducing costs for both the patients and the clinic,” Sedgwick said.

Throughout the last 10 years, the program has interpreted 397,741 breast imaging exams, performed 8,334 breast biopsies, cared for 3,274 women and men with new breast cancers, and identified 414 women with lesions at a high risk for breast cancer. The faculty has also grown from two radiologists to seven.

“The program requires an immense amount of teamwork to execute. Everyone from the front desk nurses to the pathologists and donors to the advisory council plays in important role in its success, and I couldn’t be more grateful to work with such an amazing and dedicated team,” Sedgwick added.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and Baylor doctors remind women over 40 to get their annual breast cancer screening. To schedule a mammogram at the Breast Care Center, call 713-798-1999.

On Oct. 12 and 13, the Cullen Building will be lighted pink in recognition of Metastatic Breast Cancer Day, designated by the Texas Legislature. Read more about a new Baylor program aimed at fighting this disease.

The Lester and Sue Smith Breast Center is part of Baylor’s Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center.