Patients & Visitors

Breast Unit

Your family history clinic consultation


Dr Di Dalgliesh in consultation

If you are going to be offered an appointment in the Family History Breast Clinic we will let you know as soon as we receive your completed family history questionnaire.

Closer to the appointment date we will send you an appointment letter which will include information about:

  1. Date, time, place of your appointment
  2. Our policy if you do not arrive (DNA) at your appointment
  3. Our policy if you cancel your appointment
  4. What to expect at the consultation

The appointment normally lasts 30 - 45 minutes and you will be seen by either the Family History Breast Specialist doctor, the Breast Care Nurse or Senior Radiographer both of whom work under the doctor's supervision.

At the start of the consultation we will draw your family tree (or pedigree) by reviewing the details of your family history of breast or other cancers. We will then go on to discuss a number of things including:

  1. Risk assessment - low/moderate/high
  2. Referral to genetics service where appropriate
  3. Appropriateness of screening for you - mammograms/ MRI
  4. Other risk factors - hormonal and lifestyle
  5. Past and current breast problems

You will be offered a breast examination which you may choose to accept or decline. Your decision might be influenced by whether your referring doctor has examined you recently, whether you have any symptoms or perhaps how confident you are about checking your breasts.

A number of information leaflets will be given to you and there will also be an opportunity to raise any other relevant family history issues

If you are eligible for a mammogram this will usually be offered to you on the same day. The result will be sent to you and your GP 2-3 weeks later.

A letter summarising your consultation will be posted to both you and your GP after the appointment.

There are a few other points of advice which you might find helpful to know about before your consultation:

  • Gather Information
    Find out and confirm as many details as possible about your family history before your appointment
  • Bring a companion
    You are very welcome to bring your partner or a friend with you. Not only will they keep you company if there is a delay, but you might find it helpful to have someone else listening as you are likely to receive a lot of information during your consultation
  • Bring a book
    Every effort is made to see patients punctually but for a number of reasons this may not be possible. If you are having a mammogram this will result in a possible further delay

More details about clinics can be found on:


Next Section: Screening