Find the Right Mastectomy for You at Southcoast Breast Center
A mastectomy removes part of or the entire breast to treat or prevent breast cancer. It may also involve removing lymph nodes. The type of mastectomy you have depends on the stage and type of breast cancer, as well as your preference.
At the Southcoast Breast Center, we offer various breast cancer treatments for our patients, including these types of mastectomies:
- Partial mastectomy (also known as a lumpectomy or segmental mastectomy) removes cancer and a small area of normal breast tissue around it. This option is often coupled with surgical techniques to improve the natural appearance of the breast shape. This technique is called Oncoplastic Surgery.
- Nipple-sparing mastectomy (or subcutaneous mastectomy) removes all or most of the breast tissue under the skin, leaving the nipple and areola intact.
- Skin-sparing mastectomy preserves all of the breast skin, except the nipple and the areola. This technique also avoids making any scars on the breast, leading to better results after breast reconstruction.
- Simple mastectomy (or a total mastectomy) removes the entire breast, including the breast tissue, nipple, areola, and skin.
- Modified radical mastectomy removes the entire breast, including the breast tissue, nipple, areola, skin, and underarm lymph nodes.
- Radical mastectomy removes the entire breast, including breast tissue, nipple, areola, skin, underarm lymph nodes, and the chest wall muscles under the breast.
We also work closely with plastic surgery and oncology to offer advanced options for plastic and oncoplastic surgery and many other options for breast reconstruction.
Some women are candidates for a combination of lumpectomy and radiation therapy instead of removing the breast. If you choose mastectomy versus lumpectomy combined with radiation, finding an experienced general surgeon or breast surgeon like those at the Southcoast Breast Center can help you make the right decision for you.
Reasons for a Mastectomy
Although your doctor may recommend a mastectomy to treat breast cancer, it may also be an option for women at high risk for developing breast cancer. This includes women with a strong family history of breast cancer and those who test positive for a gene mutation, such as BRCA1 or BRCA2.
Mastectomy Recovery & What to Expect
Recovery after mastectomy can take from four to eight weeks. You may experience pain and discomfort, but taking your prescribed pain relievers on schedule will help keep the pain under control.
Some women opt to have breast reconstruction after a mastectomy, while others may prefer to use a breast prosthetic. This is a fabricated breast; you slip into a bra or attach it by other means. Still, others are most comfortable living “breast free.”
Regardless of your choice, it may take time to adjust to a reconstructed breast or the absence of a breast. Many women find comfort in talking with therapists, support groups, and friends and family about the emotional aspects.
Whether you have undergone a mastectomy or you’re considering your options, let us help you navigate the path ahead. Find a doctor near you today or contact the Southcoast Breast Center directly to schedule a consultation.
The Southcoast Breast Center is a reliable resource for women with breast cancer, offering mastectomy and much more to patients in Fall River, Dartmouth, Wareham, MA, and surrounding areas.