São João Hospital - Breast Center
The Breast Center of São João Hospital is one of the partners of the Fibrenamics International Platform that works directly with the problem of breast cancer. Created on April 22nd 2008, it was born based on the work that the unit has been developing since 1959, the year it opened. This Center aims to be a reference inside and outside doors in the field of medicine that studies the anatomy, physiology and pathologies of the breast (senology).
For this, it counts on highly specialized professionals who work in its own physical space, prepared for outpatient activities: medical and psychology consultation, nursing care, image exams, diagnostic procedures, multidisciplinary consultations and follow-up consultations.
Being a multidisciplinary medical care structure, it is prepared to monitor all cases from diagnosis to the end of treatment, with a strong teaching and research component. In the words of Fernando Osório, coordinator of the Breast Cancer Group, it is also “an obligation to participate in the study of breast pathology”, saying that the Center is involved in several projects, mainly in this area. However, he affirms that the main objective at the Breast Center at São João Hospital"is assistance, that is, to diagnose and treat benign and oncological breast pathology for our patients".
Truth and transparency are fundamental values
Since its foundation and until 2013 [the most recent figures available], the Breast Center has been consolidating itself as the unit to be used by those suffering from this pathology, but not only. The screening aspect is also one of the fundamental pillars of this hospital, being pointed out by Fernando Osório as one of the paths to be taken in the context of the prevention of this pathology. "I have to stress the need to comply with the screening programs already implemented", he tells us, because, he underlines, "they are the best bet in the early diagnosis of breast cancer when it is obviously easier to treat". In fact, the Breast Center is part of the Breast Cancer Screening Program of the Northern Regional Health Administration, receiving weekly patients in need of biopsy or treatment for breast cancer.
All of them are received by a team that, in addition to the duly proven and (re) known technical-scientific competences, are guided by respect for the Person, diligence, truth and transparency, humanizing all situations and following up all cases for a period of at least five years.
Innovation is welcome
The sophistication of medical devices at the service of patients has been one of the major areas of investment worldwide, and cancer pathology is one of the most relevant ones. But it is not just the availability of money that matters. Fernando Osório, who in addition to the functions mentioned above, is also a guest assistant at the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Porto (FMUP), says that “all innovation in medical devices is welcome” because we have a duty to seek to improve the offer, but it points to a key factor in success: conducting research and development on new medical products in close proximity to patients and future users of those products. This was the methodology adopted in the development of Pradex, and the results are noticeable.
The participation of the Breast Center of São João Hospital Center in the project that gave rise to an innovative compression sleeve came about through the company Barcelcom Têxteis, which developed the sleeve with Fibrenamics. Fernando Osório, who supervised the clinical tests that attested to the effectiveness of Pradex through use in patients suffering from lymphedema, is satisfied with the result of this triad innovation partnership. “The interaction created between the national textile industry, the academic environment and the hospital clinic in developing an innovative solution for our patients was satisfactory”, taking the opportunity to emphasize that this is a “national, innovative, cheaper and, more important, more comfortable to use on a daily basis”, he concluded.
Interviewed: Fernando Osório, Coordinator of the Breast Cancer Group - Hospital São João