Mar 092021
 

Normal procedure in the Practice is for patients with certain specific long term conditions (such as asthma or COPD, heart disease, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, epilepsy etc.) to receive an invite from the practice to make a review appointment with one of our Practice Nursing Team, usually around their birthday (so that the invites are spread throughout the year).

These invites were delayed at the start of the pandemic, which we later caught up with, but they have been delayed again recently due to the amount of work we needed to put into the COVID-19 vaccination programme.

We are in a time between the administering of dose 1 and dose 2 for those patients who are receiving the vaccine from the Practice and we are again trying to catch up with some of the backlog while we can.

So if you are used to having received your invite letter or text by now, please know that we haven’t forgotten you, and we will try to get to everyone as soon as we can.

In the meantime, as ever, if you are experiencing worsening symptoms or have other concerns outside your birthday month review please call the practice from 8am to book a telephone review with your GP or PN to discuss them.

May 142019
 

The breast screening programme in Scotland invites all women between the ages of 50 and 70 years for mammograms approximately every 3 years.

Patients aged over 70 will not receive an invitation as standard, but you are still welcome to attend every 3 years and can make an appointment by ringing the centre on 0131 537 7400.

When you get your appointment depends on which practice you are registered with, and the eligible women registered at Bruntsfield are being invited for screening at Ardmillan House on Springwell Terrace during June 2019.

What happens at your appointment

Breast cancer screening involves an X-ray examination called a mammogram, which tries to detect cancer before it causes symptoms or findings on examination. The earlier a cancer is diagnosed the easier it is to treat.

The breast screening appointment takes about 10 minutes from start to finish. The mammogram itself takes barely a minute, and they are always carried out by female health professionals who will try to make you feel as comfortable as possible.

The female mammographer will position one breast at a time between two flat plates. The machine will take two X-rays of each breast. You have to stay as still as possible while the image is being taken. Having your breasts pressed flat between the plates can be uncomfortable, and some women find it painful. You can say stop at any point if you feel too much discomfort. You will be asked to undress from the waist up, so you may find it helpful to wear trousers or a skirt.

Breast Screening results

The results of your scan will be sent to you within three weeks.

The majority of women will receive a letter saying their mammograms were normal and if they are under 70 years old that they will be recalled again in 3 year. A very small number of women will need a “technical recall”. That is when the original image wasn’t clear enough to read and needs to be repeated. This can happen if not all the breast tissue was imaged, or the breast tissue was moved during the mammogram.

Around 1 in 20 women will be invited to the second stage of screening, which is to attend an appointment for further tests. This means your mammogram may be showing an area the doctors would like to image more clearly, with further mammograms and/or an ultrasound scan. Some women will also need a biopsy. A biopsy is when a small sample of tissue is removed.

Breast Screening risks

You may be concerned about your exposure to X-rays. Having mammograms every three years for 20 years very slightly increases the chance of getting cancer over a woman’s lifetime.

Mammograms don’t find all cancers and changes can happen between screenings. This is why it’s important to keep checking your breasts for any changes regularly between screenings.

You could be diagnosed with and treated for a cancer that may not spread and may not cause you harm. Unfortunately, doctors can’t always tell whether or not the cancer will spread in the future and so you may have to make some difficult decisions about going forward with treatment. While treatments save lives, they can also cause serious long-term side effects. If there are choices about your treatment then you’ll receive information and support to help you decide what is right for you.

Breast cancer facts

  • Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in the UK with over 55,000 women diagnosed each year, including around 4,700 in Scotland
  • 1 in 8 women in Scotland will be diagnosed with it during their lifetime
  • Around 5 out of 6 women diagnosed in the UK today will be alive in 5 years’ time, compared to 3 out of 6 women 40 years ago
  • However nearly 1,000 women still die of breast cancer every month in the UK, including around 80 women in Scotland

Be breast aware

Woman of all ages should be breast aware and regularly check their breasts for changes. Although lumps in your breast or armpit may be harmless, you should get them checked by the GP.

Other symptoms to look out for are:

  • A lump, area of thickened tissue or bumps in either breast.
  • A change in the size or shape of one or both breasts.
  • A lump or swelling in either of your armpits.
  • Skin that appears like orange peel.
  • Crusting on or around the nipple.
  • A leaking nipple which may or may not be streaked with blood.
  • Dimples or skin that’s become drawn in.
  • A nipple that’s become turned in.

Further information

Much of this, and further information is available in the NHS Scotland information booklet on Breast screening:

There are also several websites with further information on the Scottish breast screening programme and on breast cancer:

www.nhsinform.scot/breastscreening

www.nhsinform.scot/breastcancer

www.getcheckedearly.org/breast-cancer

Mar 112016
 

The breast screening programme in Scotland invites all women between the age of 50 and 70 years old for breast screening approximately every 3 years.

When you get your appointment depends on which practice you are registered with, and the eligible women registered at Bruntsfield are being invited for screening at Ardmillan House on Springwell Terrace during March and April 2016.

Patients aged over 70 will not receive an invitation as standard, but you are still welcome to attend every 3 years and can make an appointment by ringing the centre on 0131 537 7400.

Information About Breast Cancer

Breast cancer is the most common cancer affecting woman in the UK. In Scotland 1 in 9 woman are diagnosed with it, with around 1000 deaths in Scotland each year.

Breast Screening

Breast cancer screening involves an X-ray examination called a mammogram, which tries to detect cancer before it causes symptoms or findings on examination. The earlier a cancer is diagnosed the easier it is to treat.

In 2013, during the last screening round, 12 patients from Bruntsfield Medical Practice, out of 1,009 women screened, were diagnosed with breast cancer as a result of the screening. Overall, breast screening saves around 130 lives every year in Scotland.

Once the invitations have all gone out, if you missed or didn’t receive your appointment, and you are eligible, you can telephone the Screening Centre at Ardmillan House on 0131 537 7400 to get an appointment.

If you are worried about a breast symptom, you must see your GP who will arrange assessment, if appropriate, at the Breast Clinic at the Western General Hospital rather than the screening unit at Ardmillan House. If you have been seen in the past year in the breast clinic, the minimum interval before repeating the mammogram is 6 months.

Thanks, in part, to the breast cancer screening programme, the prognosis for patients diagnosed with breast cancer is improving. 85% of patients will live for at least 5 years and 75% of patients will live for at least 10 years.

Screening Risks

For every 200 woman who attend breast screening every 3 years from 50-70 years old, 15 are diagnosed with breast cancer. 3 of these patient’s cancers would not have caused problems and receive “over treatment”. But the remaining 12 patients receive life saving early treatment.

Mammograms can very rarely cause a cancer on account of the radiation associated with the scan. Also on occasion they can miss a cancer. Equally tumours can develop in the time between screening appointments, so that it is always important to be vigilant and breast aware.

Despite these points, cancer researchers still believe the benefits outweigh the risks in breast screening.

Breast Aware

Woman of all ages should be breast aware and regularly check their breasts for changes. Although lumps in your breast or armpit may be harmless, you should get them checked by the GP. Other symptoms to look out for are:

  • A lump, area of thickened tissue or bumps in either breast.
  • A change in the size or shape of one or both breasts.
  • A lump or swelling in either of your armpits.
  • Skin that appears like orange peel.
  • Crusting on or around the nipple.
  • A leaking nipple which may or may not be streaked with blood.
  • Dimples or skin that’s become drawn in.
  • A nipple that’s become turned in.

Family history

Less than 10% of breast cancer cases are due to inheriting a faulty gene. As breast cancer is so common, it is not uncommon to have one or two extended family members with breast cancer. For most, having a relative with breast cancer doesn’t increase their risk of breast cancer. If you are concerned about your family history of breast and ovarian cancer please see your GP, as it is sometimes appropriate to attend the Genetics Clinic at the Western General Hospital to assess your individual risk further.

Breast Screening “Helping you decide” Booklet from NHS inform website:

More information can also be found from the following websites:

www.nhsinform.co.uk
www.getcheckedearly.org
www.breakthrough.org.uk
www.breastcancercare.org.uk
www.cancerresearchuk.org

Mar 092016
 

Today is national No Smoking Day.

We are always keen to help out anyone seeking to quit smoking in any way we can, whether it is on no smoking day or not. If you would like help to quit, you can phone the Practice on 0131 228 6081 to make an appointment with your usual GP, or one of our Practice Nurses, to talk through your options.

More information on “No Smoking Day” can be accessed at: www.nosmokingday.org.uk, or www.canstopsmoking.com

You could also choose to self-refer to the NHS smokefreeLothian service by phoning the number for the South Edinburgh area: 0131 537 7154 or emailing stopsmoking.service@nhslothian.scot.nhs.uk.

The service itself offers several ways to help you stop smoking, allowing you to choose the one that best suits your lifestyle. These include one-to-one support, group support, self-help, NRT (Nicotine Replacement Therapy), or prescribed medication. Support is also available from some community pharmacists, who can provide Nicotine Replacement Therapy as well as one-to-one support sessions to help you quit. More information on all these services can also be found by clicking the stop smoking link on the NHS Lothian homepage at www.nhslothian.scot.nhs.uk

It’s never too late to give up smoking, and the support is out there to help you once you’ve made that first step in deciding to quit.

Nov 162015
 

This year’s Alcohol Awareness Week runs from 16th to 22nd November, and as in previous years, the Practice will have a focus on alcohol awareness for the patients attending during this week.

If you have an appointment with a GP or Practice Nurse this week you will be given a questionnaire by the Reception team to fill out while you wait. This is for you to hand to the Nurse or Doctor at the beginning of your consultation so they can give advice to those who may need it.

Patients should feel free, during this week or any other, to discuss with their Doctor or Nurse any concerns they may have about their alcohol consumption, pick up any leaflets available in the practice, or ask for further information that they may feel helpful.

The theme for Alcohol Awareness Week 2015 is “The Impact of Alcohol on Health and Society”. Hopefully we will be able to use this theme to highlight some of the health risks associated with drinking.

The website, alcoholconcern.org.uk, has created a number of factsheets about the effects of alcohol on various conditions:

Alcohol and Cancer
Alcohol and Dementia
Alcohol and Depression
Alcohol and Diabetes
Alcohol and Hypertension

The website, drinkaware.co.uk, also have a page with comprehensive details about the effects alcohol has on the body and your health.

Remember, to protect against the risks from alcohol, your drinking should also be spread over the week, rather than saved up for the weekend – so men should aim to drink no more than 3 to 4 units a day, and women 2 to 3 units, with at least a couple of alcohol free days a week.

How many units do you drink in a week?

Jun 092014
 

Carers Week is a UK-wide annual awareness campaign, this year running between 9th-15th June. Its aim is to improve the lives of carers and the people they care for, raising awareness of carers at a national, regional and local level.

A carer is someone who, without payment, provides help and support to a partner, child, relative, friend or neighbour, who could not manage without their regular and substantial help due to disability, physical or mental illness or addiction.

An estimated 1 in 8 people in Scotland are unpaid carers to those in need. These people can save the NHS millions, but often go unsupported in their role. The theme of this year’s Carer’s Week is the Carer’s Quest to identify and reach out to the thousands of carers in the UK who are currently missing out on services and support.

The Practice is keen to identify the carers among our patients, so if you are a carer you can come into the Practice to speak to one of our GPs or Practice Nurses to find out about the services out there that can help and support you. Or you can fill out the short form below to identify yourself to us as a carer and we will flag that on your record.

Being flagged as a carer means:

  • that information will be visible to all clinicians and it can be recognised and considered in any future consultations
  • you are eligible for the seasonal flu vaccination each year.
  • if you’re not already being reviewed by a GP or Nurse for an existing condition, you can book an appointment for an annual health check (generally done around your birthday month) with one of the Practice Nurses.

    Your Name (required)
    Your Date of Birth (required)
    Your Email Address (required)
    Who do you care for? (optional)

    If you are a carer, please also check out our Carer’s Page, that contains more information, and links to a variety of support services especially for carers.

    Mar 112014
     

    In 2014, Wednesday 12th March is No Smoking Day in the UK.

    The theme for No Smoking Day this year is V for Victory – in the battle against cancer we can help you win.

    If you would like local help to quit smoking, there are several options open to you.

    You can choose to self-refer to the NHS Stop Smoking Service by phoning the number for the South West area: 0131 537 7154 or text/call 07800 776 327

    The service itself offers several ways to help you stop smoking, allowing you to choose the one that best suits your lifestyle. These include one-to-one support, group support, self-help, NRT (Nicotine Replacement Therapy), or prescribed medication.

    Young people who want to stop smoking can call or text 07969 530266, and members of the Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual/Transgender community who do not wish to access generic services can call 0131 523 1100. This service is available at the LGBT Centre for Health & Wellbeing.

    You can phone the practice on 0131 228 6081 to make an appointment with one of our practice nurses, who will be able to explain the various stop smoking options to you, as well as offer you motivational support and encouragement. Or if you prefer, you can also speak to your usual GP.

    Support is also available from some community pharmacists, who can provide Nicotine Replacement Therapy as well as one-to-one support sessions to help you quit. The list of participating pharmacies in the South Central area is available here.

    Our Smoking Cessation advice page goes through many of the benefits of going smoke free, but there are also several other websites online that can help you find what support is available in your area, as well as find useful hints, advice and tools to help you quit, such as at www.canstopsmoking.com.

    It’s never too late to give up smoking, and the support is out there to help you once you’ve made that first step in deciding to quit.

    If you would like to update the practice on your current smoking status, you can fill out our web form here.


    No Smoking Day merged with the British Heart Foundation in 2011. The annual No Smoking Day campaign, which is now in its 30th year, inspires and helps smokers who want to quit, and is supported by an alliance of UK health bodies and charities. For more information about the No Smoking Day campaign visit www.nosmokingday.org.uk or for more on the BHF visit www.bhf.org.uk

    Nov 192013
     

    This year, Alcohol Awareness Week runs from 18-24 November 2013, and the Practice plans to focus on alcohol awareness for all patients attending the practice this week.

    If you have an appointment with a GP or Practice Nurse this week you will be given a questionnaire by the Reception team to fill out while you wait. This is for you to hand to the Nurse or Doctor at the beginning of your consultation so they can give advice to those who may need it.

    The theme for Alcohol Awareness Week 2013 is “Conversations About Alcohol”, which is an extension of last year’s theme: “Its Time to Talk About Drinking” and hopefully we are able to continue this theme to highlight some of the health risks associated with drinking.

    Patients should feel free to discuss with their Doctor or Nurse any concerns they may have, pick up any leaflets available in the practice, or ask for further information that they may feel helpful.

    For further information and advice please see the following websites:
    www.nhsinform.co.uk
    www.drinkaware.co.uk
    www.alcohol-focus-scotland.org.uk
    www.alcoholics-anonymous.org.uk
    www.alcoholconcern.org.uk
    www.nhs.uk/Alcohol

    Sep 042013
     

    Bowel cancer is the third most common cancer in Scotland after lung and breast cancer. Every year, almost 4,000 people are diagnosed with the disease. For men the risk of getting colorectal cancer over the age of 50 is 1 in 18 (5.5%) and for women the equivalent risk is 1 in 22 (4.5%). Bowel cancer is easier to treat the earlier it is diagnosed. The survival rate is more than 90% over five years when diagnosed at the earliest stage, compared to under 10% over five years at the most advanced stage.

    The Scottish Bowel Screening Programme has been introduced to increase the number of patients being diagnosed at the earliest stages. The Screening Programme invites all men and women in Scotland between the ages of 50 to 74 for screening every two years. The letter is sent to your address, soon after your 50th birthday, and then every 2 years until you are 75. The address used to send you your kit is the address you have given to register here at Bruntsfield Medical Practice. Please ensure you keep your address up-to-date with us if you move.

    The screening test is a Faecal Occult Blood Test (FOBt). The testing kit is sent by post, along with step-by-step instructions on how to use it (leaflet also linked at the end of this article). You complete the test at home and return it by Freepost to the national Bowel Screening Centre for Scotland. This test detects blood within your stool, which you are not able to see. You will also receive your results within two weeks, directly to your address.

    Most test results are negative, however if the results of the test is positive, you will be referred to hospital for further assessment, and if appropriate, may be offered a colonoscopy. A colonoscopy is the most effective test for detecting bowel cancer. The bowel is looked at directly, using a flexible tube with a camera, in an outpatient setting.

    If you have lost your kit, or did not receive one, and are eligible for the Screening Programme, another kit can be requested by ringing the Scottish Bowel Screening Helpline: 0800 0121 833. This is also the number for further information.

    Possible Symptoms of Bowel Cancer are:

    • Repeated bleeding from your bottom or blood in your motions.
    • A recent change in bowel habit that goes on day in day out for over 6 weeks without going back to normal.
    • Looser motions or alternating with constipation (constipation alone is less likely to be serious).
    • Pains in the tummy that are severe, continual and have started recently, especially after eating.
    • You have recently lost weight without trying.
    • You have been told that you are anaemic or look pale and feel tired much of the time.

    These symptoms may be caused by a number of conditions including cancer but, if you have any of the above, make an appointment to see your doctor. As no screening test is 100% accurate, even after a negative screening test result, don’t ignore the above symptoms.

    Further information:

    Scottish Bowel Screening Helpline 0800 0121 833
    www.bowelscreening.scot.nhs.uk
    www.nhsinform.co.uk

    Sep 022013
     

    The shingles vaccine has been added to the national immunisation program this year for 70 year olds, with a “catch up program” for 79 year olds.

    Shingles (Herpes Zoster) is caused by a reactivation of the chicken pox infection (varicella zoster virus VZV), sometimes decades after the first or primary infection. Following this primary infection, the virus enters the nervous system and remains there in a “latent” infection. Reactivation is usually associated with times of immunosuppression, including old age. The risk of severity of shingles increases with old age.

    Symptoms of shingles usually start with abnormal skin sensations and pain in the affected skin area (dermatome). Other features include headache, photophobia, malaise and sometimes fever. Within days or weeks, a blistering rash affecting one side of your body appears in the same skin area. The rash can be intensely painful, hypersensitive and itchy. The rash typically lasts two to four weeks. Following the rash, persistent pain at the site known as Post Herpetic Neuralgia (PHN) can develop and is seen more frequently in older people. This on average lasts three to six months, but can last longer. There are more rare and serious complications, where the virus travels to other organs in the body to cause pneumonia, encephalitis, bleeding disorders and even death.

    You must have had chicken pox in your lifetime to get shingles. Although shingles can occur at any age, it has an estimated lifetime risk of one in four.

    Transmission of the shingles virus can occur from direct contact with a shingles blister resulting in chicken pox in a susceptible individual.

    The shingles vaccine is a live attenuated vaccine, given as a one off, under your skin in your upper arm, rather than in to a muscle. It can be given at the same time as your flu or pneumococcal vaccine.

    Who can have the vaccine:

    • Patients aged 70 with a date of birth between 02/09/1942 and 01/09/1943
    • Catch up program for patients age 79 with a date of birth between 02/09/1933 and 01/09/2034
    • Those who have previously had shingles or post herpetic neuralgia

    Those who should not have the vaccine:

    • If your date of birth does not fall within the above dates
    • Currently unwell
    • Immunodeficiency with leukaemia, lymphoma, chemotherapy
    • High dose steroids
    • Active untreated TB
    • Pregnancy
    • Previous anaphylaxis to the vaccine

    The efficacy of the vaccine declines with age and so it is not recommended for people aged 80 years or older

    If you are eligible for the vaccine, don’t hesitate to book an appointment with the nurse for the flu clinic, which is starting on 30th September.

    Please see the attached leaflet at the end of this article for more information, or check out the following websites:

    www.nhsinform.co.uk
    www.immunisationscotland.org.uk

    Jul 242013
     

    Measles is an acute, highly infectious viral illness, caught through direct contact with an infected person, or through the air via droplets from coughs or sneezes. Almost all who are infected develop symptoms.

    Typical symptoms include fever, cough, conjunctivitis and a rash. It is highly infectious from 2-4 days before the rash appears, until about 5 days after the rash has appeared. In the UK, complications are quite common, even in healthy people, and approximately 20% of reported measles cases experience one or more complication. Many people mistakenly assume that measles is a harmless childhood disease like chickenpox. This is not the case.

    Complications include ear infections, vomiting and diarrhoea, pneumonia, meningitis, encephalitis, serious eye disorders, heart and nervous system problems and a progressive and fatal brain infection called subacute sclerosing panencephalitis (SSPE) sometimes many years after the first bout of measles. Death occurs in 1 in 2500 to 1 in 5000 cases of measles.

    A vaccination program was introduced at the end of 20th century and by the 1990s, measles became extremely rare. Unfortunately this changed after a research publication claiming a link between the MMR vaccine and the developmental condition autism. Despite serious flaws in this research, it received widespread coverage in the media. The research has been proven to be worthless and the Doctor who was the author, has since been struck off the medical register. Sadly, the vaccination rates fell and the disease has become more widespread again. Figures for measles so far in 2013 are at record levels in England and there have been a number of outbreaks.

    An outbreak of measles occurred this winter in south Wales. This was only confirmed officially on 3rd July 2013. During this 8 month period, 1455 cases of measles were notified to Public Health.

    There were three confirmed cases of measles in Lothian last month, indicating it is circulating locally.

    To try and prevent further outbreaks of measles, a national MMR vaccination catch up campaign is underway, targeting 10-17 year old who are unvaccinated, or partly vaccinated. 2 x MMR vaccinations, no less than one month apart, are required to provide immunity. If you require a catch up vaccination, please make an appointment with the practice nurse straight away. If you are unsure about your vaccination history, there is no medical risk by having the vaccination again. It is thought that adults born before 1970 should have immunity from their lifetime exposure.

    IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE MEASLES OR BEEN IN CONTACT WITH SOMEONE WITH MEASLES, PLEASE DO NOT COME TO THE SURGERY BUT CONTACT THE SURGERY FOR TELEPHONE TRIAGE. Measles is one of the most infectious diseases and can spread with any face to face contact or 15 minutes in the same room.

    Links:
    NHS Lothian Press Release
    NHS inform page on measles
    Immunisation Scotland page on MMR
    NHS Scotland leaflet on MMR catch-up campaign

    Jul 092013
     

    Patients should be aware that there have been some cases of measles in the Edinburgh and West Lothian areas, and NHS Scotland is strongly advising that those in the 10-17 years age group follow the recent advice to have their full MMR course or a booster jag, as appropriate.

    Patients coming into contact with suspected cases of measles MUST NOT attend the practice, but should ring to speak to a doctor for further advice.

    You can read more about the MMR catch-up campaign on the Immunisation Scotland website.

    May 162013
     

    Breast Cancer

    Breast cancer is the most common cancer affecting woman in the UK. In Scotland 1 in 8 woman are diagnosed with it, with around 1000 deaths in Scotland each year.

    Breast Screening

    Breast cancer screening involves an X-ray examination called a mammogram, which tries to detect cancer before it causes symptoms or findings on examination. The earlier a cancer is diagnosed the easier it is to treat. In Scotland, women between the ages of 50-70 years are invited every 3 years for this examination. Eligible patients registered with Bruntsfield Medical Practice are being invited in May and June this year.

    In 2010 during the last screening round, 11 patients from Bruntsfield Medical Practice were diagnosed with breast cancer as a result of the screening.

    Woman over the age of 70 are not routinely invited, however you can call the Screening Centre directly on 0131 537 7400 to arrange a 3 yearly assessment. If you miss or do not receive an appointment, and are eligible, you can telephone the Screening Centre also. If you are worried about a breast symptom, you must see your GP who will arrange assessment, if appropriate, at the Breast Clinic at the Western General Hospital rather than the screening unit at Ardmillan Terrace. If you have been seen in the past year in the breast clinic, the minimum interval before repeating the mammogram is 6 months.

    Thanks, in part, to the breast cancer screening programme, the prognosis for patients diagnosed with breast cancer is improving. 85% of patients will live for at least 5 years and 75% of patients will live for at least 10 years.

    Screening Risks

    For every 200 woman who attend breast screening every 3 years from 50-70 years old, 15 are diagnosed with breast cancer. 3 of these patient’s cancers would not have caused problems and receive “over treatment”. But the remaining 12 patients receive life saving early treatment.

    Mammograms can very rarely cause a cancer on account of the radiation associated with the scan. Also on occasion they can miss a cancer. Equally tumours can develop in the time between screening appointments, so that it is always important to be vigilant and breast aware.

    Despite these points, cancer researchers still believe the benefits outweigh the risks in breast screening. Breast screening saves 3-4 lives every day in the UK.

    Breast Aware

    Woman of all ages should be breast aware and regularly check their breasts for changes. Although lumps in your breast or armpit may be harmless, you should get them checked by the GP. Other symptoms to look out for are:

    • A lump, area of thickened tissue or bumps in either breast.
    • A change in the size or shape of one or both breasts.
    • A lump or swelling in either of your armpits.
    • Skin that appears like orange peel.
    • Crusting on or around the nipple.
    • A leaking nipple which may or may not be streaked with blood.
    • Dimples or skin that’s become drawn in.
    • A nipple that’s become turned in.

    Family history

    Less than 10% of breast cancer cases are due to inheriting a faulty gene. As breast cancer is so common, it is not uncommon to have one or two extended family members with breast cancer. For most, having a relative with breast cancer doesn’t increase their risk of breast cancer. If you are concerned about your family history of breast and ovarian cancer please see your GP, as it is sometimes appropriate to attend the Genetics Clinic at the Western General Hospital to assess your individual risk further.

    Breast Screening Booklet from NHS inform website:

    More information can be found from the following websites:

    www.nhsinform.co.uk
    www.breakthrough.org.uk
    www.breastcancercare.org.uk
    www.cancerresearchuk.org

    Mar 132013
     

    In 2013, Wednesday 13th March is No Smoking Day in the UK.

    This year the theme, Swap Fags for Swag, is all about what smokers will gain when they quit – as well as improved health, they’ll have extra cash to spend on whatever they like!

    Stopping smoking now could be like giving yourself a hefty pay rise – and it’s one benefit you’ll feel straight away.

    a day 1 day 1 week 1 month 1 year 5 years 10 years
    5 £1.75 £12.25 £52.5 £638.75 £3,193.75 £6,387.50
    10 £3.50 £24.50 £105 £1,277.50 £6,387.50 £12,775
    20 £7 £49 £210 £2,555 £12,775 £25,550
    30 £10.50 £73.50 £315 £3,832.50 £19,162.50 £38,325
    40 £14 £98 £420 £5,110 £25,550 £51,100
    60 £21 £147 £630 £7,665 £38,325 £76,650

    Based on average price of 20 cigarettes = £7.00

    If you would like local help to quit smoking, there are several options open to you.

    You can choose to self-refer to the NHS Stop Smoking Service by phoning the number for the South Central area: 0131 536 9759 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm – answering service available out of hours).

    The service itself offers several ways to help you stop smoking, allowing you to choose the one that best suits your lifestyle. These include one-to-one support, group support, self-help, NRT (Nicotine Replacement Therapy), or prescribed medication.

    There is a separate number for pregnant women who would like help to stop: 0131 672 9533, young people who want to stop can text ‘Stop Smoking’ to 07969 530266, and members of the Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual/Transgender community throughout Lothian can call 0131 558 9444

    You can phone the practice on 0131 228 6081 to make an appointment with one of our practice nurses, who will be able to explain the various stop smoking options to you, as well as offer you motivational support and encouragement. Or if you prefer, you can also speak to your usual GP.

    Support is also available from some community pharmacists, who can provide Nicotine Replacement Therapy as well as one-to-one support sessions to help you quit. The list of participating pharmacies in the South Central area is available here.

    Our Smoking Cessation advice page goes through many of the benefits of going smoke free, but there are also several other websites online that can help you find what support is available in your area, as well as find useful hints, advice and tools to help you quit, such as at www.canstopsmoking.com.

    It’s never too late to give up smoking, and the support is out there to help you once you’ve made that first step in deciding to quit.

    If you would like to update the practice on your current smoking status, you can fill out our web form here.


    No Smoking Day merged with the British Heart Foundation in 2011. The annual No Smoking Day campaign, which is now in its 30th year, inspires and helps smokers who want to quit, and is supported by an alliance of UK health bodies and charities. For more information about the No Smoking Day campaign visit www.nosmokingday.org.uk or for more on the BHF visit www.bhf.org.uk

    Smokers can visit www.WeQuit.co.uk, an online hub full of information and tips on how to quit. It also includes a forum where people can chat with more than 15,000 other quitters about the issues they face.