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I have a patient who has repeatedly had reassessments of metastatic breast cancer. Can I give her any hope at all?

Tuesday March 26, 2013
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Question:

Dear Donna,

I have noticed the words ilium and mediastinal in a patient who has repeatedly had reassessments of metastatic breast cancer. The report on the PET-CT scan indicates this is consistent with progressive disease. Can I give her any hope at all?

Concerned

Dear Donna replies:

Dear Concerned,

I do not provide medical advice in this column. You will need to consult the patient's primary care provider for an answer to your question. I will tell you that a diagnosis and prognosis cannot be made based solely on words and phrases from an X-ray report. Many other factors have to be taken into consideration.

Best wishes,
Donna


Donna Cardillo, RN, MA, well-known career guru, is Nurse.com’s “Dear Donna” and author of “Your First Year as a Nurse: Making the Transition from Total Novice to Successful Professional” and “The ULTIMATE Career Guide for Nurses: Practical Advice for Thriving at Every Stage of Your Career.” Information about the books is available at www.Nurse.com/CE/7010 and www.Nurse.com/CE/7250, respectively. To ask Donna your question, go to www.Nurse.com/Asktheexperts/Deardonna. Find a “Dear Donna” seminar near you: Call 800-866-0919 or visit http://Events.nursingspectrum.com/Seminar.