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World class sarcoma care in the West Midlands

Coming to clinic

Depending on the nature of your symptoms you will have been referred to either ROH, UHB or BWC. You may be sent for tests or you may be seen in clinic. Below, you will find some practical details about coming to clinic at each of the hospitals within the Birmingham Sarcoma Service.

ROH Birmingham sarcoma

The Royal Orthopaedic Hospital

Depending on how you have been referred – either through your GP or by another hospital- you will be sent an appointment to be seen at the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital outpatient’s department. This will either be in a Two Week Wait referral clinic or at the main clinic weekly clinic. You will be seen by either an experienced Sarcoma Advanced Nurse Practitioner who will assess your symptoms and arrange the most appropriate further investigations and discuss potential treatment or by one of the Sarcoma Consultants who will be able to discuss any surgical treatment required in more detail. At your initial consultant appointment following your diagnosis you will also meet a member of the MacMillan Nursing Team who will be able to support you through the diagnosis and treatment process.

For patients travelling from outside of the immediate locality the service will attempt to ensure that any pre- identified additional investigations, such as MRI scans or X-rays, will be obtained on the day of the appointment however this cannot always be guaranteed and there maybe be a further visit required.

As part of the investigative process it may be required to perform a biopsy. Occasionally this can be done in clinic but more often requires either an ultrasound or CT scan so will be booked on a separate day. Again, where possible this will be arranged for the following day for patients travelling from outside the area to minimise the number of return trips but this cannot be guaranteed.

At the appointment you will be able to discuss your diagnosis, planned treatment or investigations required and further plans for follow-up. The time that a patient is kept under follow-up with a diagnosis of sarcoma is ten years, this is to ensure that the cancer has been successfully treated and does not return. At these follow-up appointments you will need further imaging such as X-rays and will undergo and clinical examination; you will be seen by either one of the Consultants or one of the Senior Trainees under direct supervision.

Should any chemotherapy or radiotherapy treatment be required before any surgery (this is called Neo-Adjuvant treatment) then this will be done at the nearest centre to you that provides the appropriate service, this is not provided at the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital. When this treatment phase has completed you will be seen in clinic by your Consultant in order to discuss the surgery in more detail and acquire your consent to proceed. Once this has taken place you will be seen in the Pre-Operative Assessment Clinic (POAC) by a member of the anaesthetic team. There they will assessment your fitness for surgery, advise you on medications and discuss the anaesthetic options in more detail.

University-Hospitals-Birmingham

University Hospitals Birmingham

The nearest station to the hospital is University station, which is less than 10 minutes’ walk from the hospital. The hospital is clearly signposted from the station.

There are a number of buses that stop outside the hospital main entrance.  You can read more in the Plan a Visit section which includes information on parking. If you receive certain benefits, you are entitled to claim for travel costs and car parking charges for appointments for NHS treatment. You may also be able to claim bus fare /train costs back from the cashier’s office. You would need to bring proof of benefits with you. The cashier’s office is located near outpatient’s area two and is open 9-5 Monday to Friday.

On your first appointment you will be seen in outpatient’s area 2. To get there, you need to walk through the main entrance of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, then walk towards the red zone. Outpatients area 2 will then be signposted. You can check in via the automated stands with your letter, or go to the reception desk if you are unable to do this or if you have no letter.

You do not need to bring anything with you on your first appointment other than a list of medications that you currently take and any other information that you think may be useful in the consultation. We will ask you a brief medical history and you may undergo a clinical examination; we may also take blood tests at this appointment. We will also discuss any further tests, which are usually performed as an outpatient, such as MRI, CT scans and biopsies (see diagnostics page for more information on these).

At the appointment you will meet the consultant surgeon and be able to discuss your diagnosis, planned treatment or investigations required and further plans for follow-up. The time that a patient is kept under follow-up with a diagnosis of sarcoma is ten years, this is to ensure that the cancer has been successfully treated and does not return.

Should any chemotherapy or radiotherapy treatment be required before any surgery (this is called Neo-Adjuvant treatment) then this will either be carried out at University Hospital Birmingham site or, if you live a distance away, the nearest centre to you that provides the appropriate service.

Birmingham-Childrens-Hospital

Birmingham Women’s and Children's

Our younger new patients are seen by on a Tuesday afternoon at the newly built Waterfall House section of Birmingham Children’s Hospital in the centre of Birmingham. They will see a one of the Consultant Surgeons alongside one of the Macmillan Paediatric specialist nurses. At this appointment any potential diagnoses, along with further treatments and investigations will be discussed. For those patients who require a biopsy, this is carried out under an anaesthetic usually the following day. The consultant anaesthetist and radiologist who will be performing the biopsy will also be present in clinic to answer any questions about the procedure.

Concessionary rate parking is available at the Royal Angus Carpark opposite the main building.