Dr. Kenyon Meadows, board-certified radiation oncologist with
Southeast Georgia Health System Cancer Care Centers, and I’d like to take a few minutes today to discuss breast cancer
surgery. In this era of widespread mammography use, most women are diagnosed
with early-stage breast cancer and therefore have a choice of the type
of surgery they would like to have. The options include breast conservation
surgery, also called lumpectomy, or a mastectomy. Breast conservation
surgery preserves the breast, removing only the tumor and a rim of surrounding
normal tissue whereas mastectomy removes the entire breast.
While most women choose lumpectomy, the rates of breast conservation surgery
can vary significantly and are dependent on a number of factors, including
patient age, tumor stage, the physician’s surgical expertise and
training, or whether there is convenient access to a radiation facility
as most often radiation therapy is recommended after breast conservation surgery.
The decision between lumpectomy and mastectomy can sometimes be complex
and requires a detailed discussion with your doctor. We've included
some helpful links below. If you have any questions, submit them to me
in the comment box, and I’ll respond via email. Thanks!