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At Ellis Fischel Cancer Center, we are with you every step of your breast cancer journey.

One of the top considerations is your surgical options after breast cancer. There are two main types of surgery to remove breast cancer:

  • Breast conservation (also called a lumpectomy, partial mastectomy, or segmental mastectomy) involves removing the tumor while preserving as much normal breast tissue as possible.
  • Mastectomy involves removal of the entire breast. A mastectomy can be performed with or without reconstruction. Some patients may have the option to preserve the nipple-areolar complex at the time of mastectomy (nipple-sparing mastectomy).

In addition to surgery to remove breast cancer, many patients also need surgery to remove nearby lymph nodes. This will be used to determine if the cancer has spread and important to calculate the stage of the cancer.

  • Sentinel lymph node biopsy is a procedure involving removal of the first lymph nodes where cancer would spread.
  • Axillary node dissection is a procedure involving removal of a grouping of lymph nodes under the arm pit. This is typically reserved for patients with cancer that has already spread to the lymph nodes.

The breast surgical oncologists at Ellis Fischel work closely with plastic surgeons for:

  • Breast reconstruction, which can be done at the time of mastectomy (immediate) or at a later time (delayed). Breast reconstruction can also be performed with implants or with a patient’s own tissue (flap reconstruction).
  • Oncoplastic procedures, which are a combination of removal of the breast tumor while optimizing cosmetic outcome. They can be similar to a breast reduction combining a decrease in breast volume with reshaping of the breast mound, a breast lift, or an augmentation of volume loss.
  • Contralateral symmetry procedures

Learn more about the plastic surgery team at MU Health Care.

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