Sonographer-led One-Stop Neck Lump Clinic (Nicki Davidson)

Nicki Davidson, Worcestershire Acute NHS Trust


A sonographer-led one-stop neck lump clinic was introduced three years ago to support patient flow, improve two-week wait times and provide quicker access to fine-needle aspiration (FNA). The clinic was designed with a biomedical scientist support to provide immediate results regarding FNA adequacy. The objective of the audit was to provide an overview of the service and to identify any further areas of development.


A retrospective audit was performed of all patients who had attended the one-stop neck lump clinic within the 3-year period. CRIS records were used to obtain details of the scan type, any pathology identified, who performed the scan and whether FNA was performed. Histology of all FNAs was reviewed to form part of the final diagnosis and provide results on adequacy. Each 12-month period was reviewed and compared; special consideration was made to see if the service had been affected by COVID-19.


Numbers attending the clinic over the 3-year period have remained similar with no impact owing to COVID-19 other than the initial reduction in the first two weeks of the first ‘lockdown’. The number of patients attending who had significant/malignant pathology also remained stable over the three years (approx. 20% of all attendees), although there seems to have been a shift with more thyroid pathology in year 3.


Clinic was not significantly impacted by COVID-19 and is continuing to provide a good level of service to support the ENT team with quick access to FNA and also enabling discharge of patients with benign findings at the same appointment.

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