There have been many advances in the treatment of breast cancer in recent years. Now more than ever, breast cancer patients are able to receive innovative treatment strategies designed to help women recover from this disease. Surgery is one of the most successful treatments for removing the cancer and preventing it from returning.
There are many different approaches to breast surgery. While a large percentage of women diagnosed with breast cancer will undergo some type of surgery, the approach that the surgeon will take depends on many factors, including the stage and type of cancer. Breast-conserving surgery involves removing the cancer but not the breast itself. Examples of this type of surgery include:
- Lumpectomy: This surgery removes the tumor and a small amount of tissue surrounding it.
- Partial mastectomy: The part of the breast that has cancer is removed as well as some of the normal tissue around it.
Sometimes it is necessary to perform a total mastectomy to remove the entire breast. Reconstruction may take place at the time of the removal or at a later date. Your surgeon will consult with your plastic surgeon to determine a surgery plan that will benefit you most.
With all types of breast surgery, lymph nodes may be removed to determine if the cancer has spread beyond the tumor. Chemotherapy and radiation may be administered before or after the surgery. Your physician will make recommendations for other treatments that may be necessary for a full recovery.
Many women with early stage cancer may choose a breast-conserving surgery while those with late stage cancer or cancer that has spread into the lymph nodes may require a total mastectomy. When choosing between the two types of surgery, you will need to speak with your physician about the risks and benefits of each. Each patient is unique and will have her own treatment plan that is specific to her individual case.
FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital is the leader in breast cancer care, treatment, and therapy for patients in the Pinehurst, Sanford, Raeford, Laurinburg, Lumberton, Troy, and Rockingham regions of North Carolina.
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