Today in our Professional Profiles Section we introduce you to Maria Besné, a physiotherapist at Onkologikoa.
Maria, how long have you been working at Onkologikoa?
Well it feels like only yesterday that I started at Onkologikoa, but when I look back I realise that 20 years have gone by.
What does your everyday work involve? What are your main duties?
I work at Onkologikoa as a physiotherapist, specialising in breast drainage and cancer. I mainly deal with patients who have had breast surgery, both radical and conservative, working to prevent post-surgery lymphedema after removal of the lymph nodes. I also work on rehabilitation.
How do you think your area will evolve with regard to the treatment received by the oncology patient?
It has already evolved enormously; since I started 20 years ago, both the kind of patient and the treatment they receive have changed. Back then, surgery was far more radical and the consequences were far more important at physical level. Today we work much more on aspects like prevention, palliative care, respiratory physiotherapy, patient rehabilitation following systemic treatments… The role of the physiotherapist at Onkologikoa has changed a great deal in recent years as far as their skills are concerned.
What do you think is the most positive thing you give patients through physiotherapy?
I think it would be the friendly way you treat the patient… considering them to be people… that’s what opens the doors to being able to give them more concise, precise and quality information, because you have created a connection and a relationship of trust between the professional and the patient.
Do you see yourself staying at Onkologikoa in the future, or would you like to work in other specialities?
I hope to continue working here, I’d love that. I have a long-standing connection with the hospital, with my colleagues and with the people I treat, and I’d like to continue doing that. I wouldn’t mind learning about other fields, but always combining it with what I do, because I get a lot out of it professionally and I above all value the involvement I have with the oncology patient. It’s a hard speciality, but the feedback I get from my patients is highly positive. I hope my speciality can continue to grow at Onkologikoa so that we can treat increasingly more patients.