Beating breast cancer with a team approach

Last March Pam Biberston received a phone call that changed her life.

Just days before, she was sent by her family physician to the Marjorie E. Radin Breast Care Center at Clovis Community Medical Center for a routine mammogram. 

“Once I went in, they called me a few days later to let me know that there was something suspicious on the film that they wanted to check out,” Biberston said.

It turned out to be cancer – in both breasts. Nurse coordinator Beverly Anthony gave Biberston the news and prepared her for the next steps.

She explained how a group of specialists – comprised of a radiologist, oncologist, pathologist, geneticist, surgeons and a nurse – would meet with Biberston to discuss the best plan for treatment. The Radin Breast Care Center’s approach to treatment features a team of specialists all in one location for patient convenience.

“By the time the patient leaves here after the conference and clinic, she has a plan of care, she knows what’s going to happen, with whom, when and how and has a chance to get all of her questions answered,” Anthony said.

Dr. Deborah Gumina, Biberston’s surgeon, said that right after the doctors’ conference they meet one-on-one with the patient.

Biberston said she always felt very comfortable with her doctors and appreciated their enthusiasm for their discipline. She said, “I knew that they loved what they were doing.”

As a breast cancer survivor, she is feeling good and enjoying some of her favorite hobbies again such as reading and baking.

“There is a strength that comes knowing that I have done something hard in my life, but I have come through a winner— a survivor.”

Toni LaSalle reported this story. She can be reached at MedWatchToday@CommunityMedical.org.