At the Asian Breast Center, our surgeons are experts in the fields of breast cancer surgery and plastic and reconstructive surgery to give women more treatment options and cosmetic outcomes.
Lumpectomy (Breast Conservation Therapy)
A lumpectomy or a partial mastectomy is done to remove the cancerous tumor as well as surrounding normal tissue around the edge. This is also considered as breast conservation therapy since the whole breast is not removed.
Candidates for breast conservation include those with early stage breast cancer. Hence, early screening and diagnosis is a must for asymptomatic women over 40 years old or those with suspicious signs of breast disease. A combination of a mammogram and molecular breast imaging gives the best outcome.
According to studies, long-term survival rate is the same for patients undergoing lumpectomy and those who choose mastectomy. A lumpectomy is often combined with conventional radiation therapy or intraoperative radiation therapy.
A mastectomy involves removal of the entire breast tissue and not just the cancerous tumor.
There are different kinds of mastectomies that the surgeon may do depending on the extent of the cancer as well as patients’ preferences. These include a radical mastectomy, modified radical mastectomy, simple mastectomy, skin-sparing mastectomy and nipple-sparing mastectomy. The last two procedures are often coupled with breast reconstruction since normal breast tissue is intact. However, strict criteria are used for patients opting to undergo these procedures.
Candidates for a mastectomy include those with advanced cancers, multiple cancer sites in one breast, recurrent cancers, those who are not candidates for radiation, and those who simply don’t want to undergo follow up mammograms or radiation.
Oncoplastic surgery involves combining cancer surgery and plastic surgery in one operation.
The goal of oncoplastic surgery is to have good aesthetic outcomes and quality of life for women with breast cancer following breast conservation surgery or certain mastectomies.
Oncoplastic surgery is not just mere reconstruction of the breast. If this is offered to a patient, the principles of oncoplastic surgery must be in mind even while doing a lumpectomy or mastectomy – thought and planning must go into the surgery. Some of the techniques allow repositioning of the nipple to a more natural position since some lumpectomies or mastectomies may cause shifting of the nipple location. Oncoplastic surgery may also be done to the contralateral breast to assure symmetry of the breasts.