Three medical students linked to Letterkenny General Hospital, the Donegal Clinical Research Academy and University Hospital Galway have undertaken work to identify new potential techniques to reduce the volume of breast removed during conservative breast cancer surgery.
The three sumer research fellows – Dearbhla Hillick, Eoghan Shanley and David Sciascia – have been funded through public donations from members of the public in the North West.
The students are working under the supervision of Ms Alison Johnston, Clinical Research Nurse and Mr Michael Sugrue, Lead Clinician and Consultant Breast Surgeon at LGH.
They students have identified new techniques of breast volume measurement leading to patent filing and acceptance of their work at the American Society of Clinical Oncology Meeting in San Francisco.
Mr Sugrue commented, “Letterkenny Hospital has a low re-excision rate following breast conservative surgery in line with international best practice and this is monitored regularly. The findings of the students’ research are significant and I’m very happy with the progress the research programme is making”.
This is the third consecutive year that the Letterkenny Hospital Breast Unit has undertaken a research fellowship programme for the summer, with a small stipend for the research fellows funded through generous donations from the community.
Letterkenny Hospital is a satellite to the designated cancer centre in Galway and is making a significant contribution to advancing clinical breast research in Ireland.
Mr Michael Sugrue and the team, with Dr Duffy, Consultant Oncologist; Dr McGowan, Consultant Radiologist; Dr O’Dowd, Consultant Pathologist; Dr Salib, Consultant Radiation/Oncology and Geraldine MacGregor, Breast Nurse Specialist, have established one of the first courses in the world for teaching multi disciplinary breast cancer care to health professionals.
This exciting one-day programme is being organised by the Donegal Clinical Research Academy and will take place on Friday 15 August.
Three international guest speakers will attend including Dr Sandra Brennan from Sloan-Kettering in the United States, Petrousjka van den Tol from the Netherlands and Professor Koji Yamashita from Japan.