At Spire Wellesley Hospital, Southend on Sea, Essex, we are committed to providing our patients with a personalised and professional service they would expect from high quality private hospital.
Our goal is to help patients back to a normal life as quickly as possible.
Our goal is to help patients back to a normal life as quickly as possible.
From initial consultation and diagnosis through to treatment and follow-up, Spire Wellesley Hospital in Southend is committed to giving each patient a high level of personalised care. Our goal is to help patients back to normal life as quickly as possible and to support them throughout the entire treatment process.
We offer private chemotherapy treatment to patients from Essex and the surrounding area and our experienced cancer surgeons, radiologists, consultant oncologists, consultant haematologists, and oncology/haematology nurses work together to treat a wide range of cancers. Our private patient services include diagnosis, cancer staging, surgical treatment, reconstructive surgery and chemotherapy and you’ll also have 24-hour access to our specialist oncology nurses, who provide on-going support to patients and their families.
Early diagnosis is important for the successful treatment of cancer. Same-day appointments are often available for urgent tests, eg, various laboratory tests, bone marrow procedures and scans. Patients can be referred by their GP or consultant for a range of X-rays and scans. (Please see information on the right of the page)
Your consultant oncologist will develop an integrated oncology care plan for you and you will be cared for throughout your treatment by a team of specialist nurses. Our specialist nurses can help answer your questions throughout your treatment and can help to provide any information you may need
If you are having private chemotherapy treatment at Spire Wellesley Hospital, you will always have a private room for the day of your treatment. You’ll also have 24-hour access to our oncology/haematology nurse, who provides on-going support to patients and their families.
Before your chemotherapy begins, you will be seen by the oncology/haematology nurse for pre-treatment assessment. This is to discuss your treatment and possible side effects.
Our oncology service provides:
- A 24-hour on call service
- All types of chemotherapy, including complex regimes
- New chemotherapy regimes, or combinations with biological therapies, some of which may not be available on the NHS
- Management of central venous catheters including Portacaths, Hickman and PICC lines
- Scalp cooling to reduce hair loss, when appropriate (see below)
- Referral to appropriate specialist agencies, e.g. breast care nurse specialists
What is involved in having chemotherapy?
If you need chemotherapy, you will be referred to a consultant oncologist who specialises in your type of cancer. They will discuss the type and length of treatment you need with you, and will oversee all of your chemotherapy. You will also have the opportunity to talk about your treatment and any side effects with the nursing team before your first session of chemotherapy.
Chemotherapy may become a part of your life for a while. For most patients, chemotherapy treatment will be given in cycles over a period of four to six months, with between one and four treatments each month.
Your oncologist will see you at the start of each treatment cycle. Treatment sessions usually last a morning or afternoon, and you can bring a family member or friend with you to keep you company. We have created a warm and friendly environment so that you can feel as comfortable and relaxed as possible while you are here. We also offer flexible appointment times to help you fit treatment around your daily life.
Chemotherapy is usually given through a drip in your arm together with anti-sickness drugs. You will be able to sit or lie comfortably and read, watch TV and eat and drink as normal. You will be cared for throughout each treatment by our specialist oncology nurses.
It is important that you feel supported and reassured throughout the process, so your nurses will give you a list of contact numbers for you to use any time of the day or night if you need support or advice.
Wellbeing during chemotherapy
There is a lot you can do to promote a feeling of well-being throughout your treatment:
- A balanced diet is essential; some people prefer to eat small regular meals instead of larger meals, to aid digestion. There may be some dietary restrictions with certain treatments but your nurse will go through these with you. Try to increase your fluid intake, particularly around the time you receive your chemotherapy.
- Some people feel fatigued during treatment, so it is important that you listen to the signs your body gives when it needs to rest. Try to reduce activities for a few days around treatment time until you are used to how you feel during treatment.
- It is not necessary to give up gentle exercise such as walking or any hobbies you enjoy, but try to pace yourself so that you are not placing too many demands on your body. If you feel well enough, you may continue to drive and to work.
- Allowing family and friends to help you takes some of the strain off you and helps them feel involved.
Your consultant surgeon will be with you throughout your journey, from your first out-patient visit to your aftercare and recovery plan.
You will be looked after in your own private room and cared for by our experienced nursing team who will do everything they can to make your recovery as swift and as comfortable as possible. Your visitors can come to see you any time, should your treatment allow, and drinks and meals for them can also be arranged if required.
What is involved in having cancer surgery?
Your consultant will explain everything before a date is arranged for you to come into hospital, including how the surgery will be performed and how long it will take.
You may also have a pre-operative assessment with a specialist nurse who can answer any other questions you may have. They can also perform any tests you may need before surgery, like an ECG or more blood tests.
On the day of surgery you can bring a partner, family member or friend with you for reassurance and support. Your consultant will visit you in your room to answer any further questions, and you will meet your consultant anaesthetist who will take you through the type of anaesthetic you will be given and discuss pain relief with you. Your partner, family member of friend is welcome to stay in your room while you are in the operating theatre and have their meals in the hospital, so they are there for you when you come back from surgery. We keep visiting hours flexible throughout your stay and offer free parking so that your friends and loved ones can spend lots of time with you to help you recover.
A dedicated ward nursing team will look after you during your stay in hospital. Your team will include an oncologist, pharmacist and other specialist support staff such as a breast care nurse if appropriate.
The team work closely together with your consultant, following a tailored treatment plan and they will aim to ensure you know the next step in your treatment before you leave hospital.
Scalp cooling service
Although it's not guaranteed to prevent hair loss, scalp cooling is an option that many patients choose during their chemotherapy treatment (if the type of chemotherapy you are having could lead to hair loss).
If your treatment plan includes a course of radiotherapy, your consultant oncologist will arrange this at a nearby NHS hospital, depending on your wishes and the specific treatment you need.
Breast cancer care
Our specialist breast care nurse works alongside our oncology team to give patients with breast cancer additional support from the point of diagnosis, through surgery and on-going treatment, including breast reconstruction options.
Home care and hospice care
When needed, our oncology team liaises with the Macmillan service and your GP to offer further support within your own home or in a hospice setting.
For more information regarding the Spire Wellesley Hospital cancer services and treatments, please contact Debbie Cavin, Oncology Nurse Specialist, on 07730 761 634.