Cancer is a frightening diagnosis to anyone, but for many breast cancer patients, it can come as quite a shock. My patients are usually healthy women and often do not feel “sick.” For many in this situation, the prospect of cancer treatments is overwhelming and is quite a disconnect from how they actually feel. My goal is to educate them about their options and meet them where they are.
This specialty has always been collaborative and multidisciplinary. Patients can expect that we work in a coordinated fashion to craft a personalized treatment plan. For each patient, I do my best to assess the situation from both a clinical or medical perspective and from a patient’s perspective. I want to include the patient's views and understanding as much as possible and for them to share guidance when needed.
I also like to make connections. I always like to play DJ for patients in the OR; patients can choose an artist or song and have some control at a time where they often have little. I remember asking an elderly patient what she would like to go to sleep to, and she said, "I want reggae! I wanna be the cool old lady!" It was a delight for all of us in the room that day.
Area of clinical practice
Breast cancers, breast health
I like the educational aspect of my chosen surgical subspecialty. I enjoy educating patients about their disease process, surgical options and sequence of care. I have always appreciated the collaborative nature of treatment of this disease and constantly learning and improving.
Fellowship, Breast Surgery
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
St. Joseph Mercy Hospital
University of Chicago Division of the Biological Sciences, The Pritzker School of Medicine
American Board of Surgery, Pediatric Nurse Practitioner
Seattle Met's 2023 Top Doctors award
Dr. Buchanan has received this peer-nominated award for exceptional patient care for multiple years.
At Fred Hutch, you receive care from a team of providers with extensive experience in your disease. Your team includes doctors, a patient care coordinator, a registered nurse, an advanced practice provider and others, based on your needs. You also have access to experts like nutritionists, social workers, acupuncturists, psychiatrists and more who specialize in supporting people with cancer or blood disorders.
Fred Hutch accepts most national private health insurance plans as well as Medicare. We also accept Medicaid for people from Washington, Alaska, Montana and Idaho. We are working to ensure that everyone, no matter what their financial situation, has access to the care they need.