Debi Fischer is a nurse at the University of Miami surgical oncology step down unit. Prior to that she worked in orthopedics and neurology for many years. In addition to her nursing experience, she has earned a master’s degree in social work. Becoming a Licensed Clinical Social Worker was a lon-sought-after goal which she finally attained. She is a caregiver for her family and her dogs as well.
Your patient had a mastectomy and chemotherapy and is recovering on the post-op surgical oncology unit. She has 1 or 2 JPs (Jackson Pratt’s) which are drained on a prn basis and a surgical bra. The physical part of her recovery is in progress, but what about body image issues?
Listening to a patient carefully, anticipating their needs, and being flexible in your responses to their care schedule are 3 ways oncology nurses can help improve the patient's experience during a hospital stay.