fbpx

Setting the Bar in Breast Health Support | Baylor Scott & White Medical Center — Lake Pointe - - Archived

MAIN DSC

By Steve Gamel | Photos by
The Teal Album

As a breast patient nurse navigator
at Baylor Scott & White Medical Center — Lake Pointe, Vicki Johnson
doesn’t have to imagine what it’s like for women with breast
cancer.
Johnson is an 8-year breast cancer survivor and knows all
too well the emotional toll of the diagnosis, which is magnified by the
stress and unfamiliarity of their impending healthcare journey and fears of
the outcome. But one thing she never worried about was being alone. And now,
it’s her job to give other women the same compassionate
support.

“When I went through chemotherapy, a nurse
would go to all the patients and say, ‘I had the same doctors as you. I did
great, and you will, too,’” Johnson said. “She was an incredible cheerleader.
I could not take my eyes off her. I believed that if she could do it, so
could I. That is why I switched gears in my nursing career to breast
navigation.

“The patients I work with can never say ‘You
don’t understand’ because I do. It’s important to be there for them however I
can.”

Johnson and her counterpart, Alex Waddle, are
more than just cheerleaders. Waddle is a breast patient nurse navigator who
represents the High-Risk Breast Program at Baylor Scott & White —
Lake Pointe. This comprehensive program helps patients reduce their risk
factors and keep a watchful eye on their situation to enable the earliest
diagnosis. This is achieved through a blend of state-of-the-art breast
screening and diagnostic services with coordinated education, health
resources, doctor recommendations, and in-the-moment, hands-on care from the
time a woman schedules her mammogram through the next steps, which can
include biopsies, breast cancer diagnosis, and next-step treatment options.
Johnson and Waddle are committed to preventing, detecting, and diagnosing
breast conditions, including breast cancer.

Waddle added, “Talking about breast cancer is
scary, whether they have an abnormal mammogram, high-risk biopsy lesion, or
they’ve been diagnosed. I love this program because there is someone for each
stage of care.”

It’s Time
for Your Mammogram

Breast cancer is one of the most common
cancers in women in the United States. While it mainly occurs in middle-aged
and older women, a small number of women diagnosed with breast cancer are
younger than 45. This makes early detection so critical, and mammograms and
other breast screenings play a huge role. Baylor Scott & White — Lake
Pointe offers state-of-the-art mammography at all five of their breast
imaging facilities. This allows doctors to examine breast tissue with the
finest imaging possible.

“Once a
patient comes in for a mammogram screening, it’s my job to contact those
women who meet the program’s criteria and may be considered high-risk,
whether it is because they have a strong family history or something else,”
Waddle said. “If they are high-risk, we educate them about their risks, offer
a personalized monitoring plan, and provide them with tools, resources, and
support to feel more confident about the journey ahead. If someone is
diagnosed, that’s when Vicki comes in.”

Baylor
Scott & White — Lake Pointe’s Breast Health Nurse
Navigators:

     

  • Provide emotional support to patients and their
    families
  •  

  • Answer questions
    regarding breast health and treatment plans
  •  

  • Discuss facts
    regarding breast cancer, the cancer care team, and its treatment
    plans
  •  

  • Help patients
    understand the “why” behind the many steps of breast cancer treatment
  •  

  • Provide resources
    for support groups, cancer recovery boutiques that offer wigs, mastectomy
    bras and prosthetics, and financial assistance

“We offer a personalized experience,” Johnson
said. “Patients are contacted pre-biopsy for questions regarding the
procedure and post-biopsy for follow-up. If the patient requires surgery, I
arrange an appointment with the breast surgeon. From there, I discuss next
steps, including what to expect during their visit and the reason behind the
diagnostic testing. If possible, I’m with the patients during their breast
biopsy and surgery, and I follow them through the breast cancer treatment
process.”

Their
Specialty Is You

As previously mentioned, the advantage of
going to Baylor Scott & White Medical Center — Lake Pointe is having
a breast health nurse navigator to answer questions and provide valuable resources
that help you make informed decisions. Rather than work with a navigator by
phone, patients have an advocate walking alongside them.

“There’s nothing better than having access to
someone in person,” Johnson said. “We want our patients to know how important
they are, so I’m there as much as possible on surgery and biopsy days. Our
process works. We have excellent communication with the radiologist, and they
have great communication with our surgeons. I have direct access to our
surgeons and the patients, and that’s a great feeling. We often have patients
who have negative breast biopsies but are concerned because of family
history. That is when we refer them to Alex, and she continues to follow up
with them. It’s a continuous circle that keeps patients in the loop with
their health.”

In an industry where everyone’s goal is to
provide the highest level of care, it can be difficult to differentiate
yourself. That’s why the Baylor Scott & White — Lake Pointe team goes
to such great lengths to ensure patients and their families have the best
experience possible regarding any breast cancer screening
need.

“I can’t
stress enough the importance of what we do,”
Waddle
said. 


CONTACT

Baylor
Scott & White Medical Center’s Breast Imaging
Locations

Baylor Scott
& White Medical Center — Lake Pointe

6800 Scenic Drive

Rowlett, Texas 75088

(972)
535-2710

Baylor Scott
& White Imaging Center — Rockwall

1005 West Ralph Hall Parkway

Rockwall, Texas 75032

(972)
535-2710

Baylor Scott
& White Imaging Center — Wylie

2300 West FM 544, Suite 110

Wylie, Texas 75098

(972)
535-2710

Baylor Scott
& White Imaging Center — Forney

763 East State Highway 80, Suite 120

Forney, Texas 75126

(972)
535-2710

Baylor Scott
& White Imaging Center — Greenville

4400 Interstate 30 West, Suite 200

Greenville, Texas 75032

(972)
535-2710


Read More In
The Spotlight HERE on LivingMagazine.net

You May Also Like

decoratingden x

Jennifer Jones, Decorating Den Interiors

Try to pick the lock alone if you must, but Jennifer Jones jingles the ...

CleanJuice

An Organic Lifestyle for Physical and Spiritual Health | Clean Juice Morton Ranch

By Melissa Gautier | Photos by Karen McConaughey Melissa Bonesteel enjoys a nutritious organic ...

SPORT Cover x EDIT

SPORT Orthopedics + Physical Therapy

By Meredith Knight John’s only regret is that he didn’t see Dr. Robert E. ...

BEAZER HOMES BECOMES FIRST NATIONAL HOMEBUILDER TO BUILD 100% ZERO ENERGY READY HOMES IN DFW

Beazer Homes

Beazer Homes is thrilled to announce they are now offering homes certified by the ...

Alan Elliott, Elliott Management LLC

By Drew Anderson In a world where every day, more business, shopping, and financial ...

Best Life Chiropractic And Wellness Center – BestOf Winner 2021

PHOTO BY WHAT’S THAT GUY’S NAME? Dr. Laura Le and the staff at Best ...