Cancer screening and cure: the Carcassonne hospital center at the forefront

the essential
In the light of this pink October, which highlights the role and importance of breast cancer screening, an immersion in the heart of the Carcassonne hospital which invests, commits and improves its systems to consolidate cancer care, thereby strengthening the territorial network in terms of public health.

Alain Guinamant, director of the Carcassonne hospital center, insists. “Our hospital is fortunate to be able to offer, in the field of oncology, an extremely wide range of care with a wide range of services and specialties. In addition, there is a technical platform which, on the scale of Occitania, is unrivaled in a city the size of Carcassonne. Let us think of nuclear medicine, radiotherapy or even the presence of an imaging department with a large support capacity within which we have just installed a high-performance mammographic activity.“, he proudly assures. Thanks to three projects which are coming to an end, thus providing the hospital with the latest generation equipment at the cutting edge of technology, the establishment enjoys today, and even more tomorrow, hyper-performing cancer care.

Ultra-efficient technology

Under construction, a new building is emerging from the ground. Here, as an extension of the nuclear medicine department, a Tep-scan (Positron Emission Tomography) will be installed. “Today it is essential equipment in the treatment of cancer. And this, both in the initial assessment of the extension of the disease and for the follow-up of treatments.“, explains Blanche Orsal, the head of the nuclear medicine department. The patient is then injected with a radioactive sugar, the cancer cells are hungry for it,”and nou, thanks to the equipment’s camera, we will be able to detect it“, explains the department head. After the injection, the patient rests for an hour in a box whose layout and construction meet the requirements of the nuclear safety authority which governs the location of the premises. in nuclear medicine. “The patient, being himself radioactive, the doors of the box are made of lead“, she underlines. Such equipment is intended for all types of cancer, insists Blanche Orsal,”breast, ovarian, lung, prostate or bladder cancers, etc.“, she lists.

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For the creation of this additional activity, requiring de facto specific skills, several positions have been created and new hires are being made, in particular “medical and paramedical staff, electro-cardiology technicians, nursing aides, radiopharmacists, etc.“, she explains.

Within the radiography department, the hospital recently acquired a new mammography machine, again very efficient. At the heart of the room dedicated to the examination, “everything is done to play down and relax the patient“explains Carine Chourreu, healthcare manager in the imaging department.”The ergonomics of the machine are much better. The rounded edges on the one hand, the plate intended to receive the breast is at room temperature. In fact, everything is done to improve the patient’s comfort“, she specifies. If the manipulator takes care of the compression of the chest,”there is also a novelty: a remote control allowing the patient to manage the compression of her breast herself and we know that this is more effective when the patient takes care of it“, testifies Carine Chourreu.

Of prime importance for the hospital, “but more broadly for all of West Audois“, insists Dr. Hacene, head of the radiotherapy department, the linear particle accelerator, installed in March 2020,”either a few days before confinement“, can treat all cancerous tumors requiring radiotherapy.”But, this one has the particularity of making stereotaxic radiotherapy. It then allows you to go where the surgeon cannot go, either on very small tumors of less than 4 cm that can be irradiated at very high doses, in a few sessions while completely protecting the healthy tissue around.“, specifies with passion Samir Hacene.”It is a very clear and very good step forward for our territory.“, he concludes.

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Committed to consolidating cancer care, the hospital also insists on screening, which it is essential to highlight in the light of pink October. If it is aimed at all women from 50 years old, “we note that the women eligible for the latter are, in the Aude and compared to the national average, less numerous to do it”, says Alain Guinamant, the director of the hospital. Breast cancer, he recalls, is “the first cancer and the first cause of death in women”. While one in 8 women is at risk of being affected, the number of screenings “is still too low,” he says. On the other hand, “It is also the one and only cancer which can, if detected early, be treated at 97%, insists Nadège Babin, head of the women-children department, hence the importance of mammography and ‘acquisition of such equipment within the Carcassonne hospital center “, she adds. “Because, if before the offer of mammographic care was only the result of the private sector, thus raising problems with regard to our population, the equipment which the hospital has today, considerably strengthens the territorial network in terms of health. “.

Department-wide, there are approximately 40,000 eligible women each year. “Only less than 20,000 carry out this screening, or less than 50% of the population concerned”, deplores Alain Guinamant. “In the West Audois, around 10,000 eligible women are still not screened. So that’s the whole point of mammographic activity in our hospital center”, he concludes.

Carcassonne: giving women access to breast cancer screening at public hospitals

Committed to consolidating cancer care, the hospital also insists on screening, which it is essential to highlight in the light of pink October. If it is aimed at all women from the age of 50, “we note that women eligible for the latter are, in the Aude and compared to the national average, less likely to do so“, declares Alain Guinamant, the director of the hospital. Breast cancer, he recalls, is”the first cancer and the leading cause of death in women“. While one in 8 women is at risk of being affected, the number of screenings”is still too weak“, he said. On the other hand,”it is also the one and only cancer that can, if detected early, be treated at 97%, insists Nadège Babin, head of the women-children department, hence the importance of mammography and the acquisition of such equipment within the Carcassonne hospital center“, she adds.”Because, if before the offer of mammographic care was only the result of the private sector, thus raising problems with regard to our population, the equipment which the hospital has today, considerably strengthens the territorial network in terms of health.“Department-wide, there are approximately 40,000 eligible women each year.”Only less than 20,000 perform this screening, i.e. less than 50% of the population concerned.“, deplores Alain Guinamant.”In the West Audois, around 10,000 eligible women are still not getting tested. This is the whole point of the mammographic activity within our hospital center.“, he concludes.

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