(A) When a lumpectomy or partial mastectomy might distort a woman’s breast, remaining disease-free breast tissue can be sculpted to avoid distortion, realign the nipple and areola, and give the breast a natural appearance. Using oncoplastic techniques to move the remaining breast tissue and fill in defects created by lumpectomy or partial mastectomy, in a manner similar to what is done during a breast reduction or breast lift, breast shape can be better preserved, and in some cases, even enhanced. In addition, a breast lift or breast reduction is frequently performed on the opposite breast to produce symmetry. (B) The scar needed to produce the optimal result will vary from one situation to the next, but frequently the resultant scar is similar to that which results following breast reduction surgery.
Oncoplastic surgery can improve the final shape of the breast after breast-conserving surgery without compromising cancer care. When a lumpectomy or partial mastectomy will or might distort a woman’s breast, the remaining tissue can be sculpted to realign the nipple and areola and give the breast a natural appearance. By rotating breast tissue to fill defects created by the lumpectomy or partial mastectomy (in a manner similar to what is done during a breast reduction or breast lift) breast shape can be better preserved. In addition, the opposing breast can also be modified, for example with a breast reduction or breast lift, to improve symmetry. These procedures are usually done on an outpatient basis.
Because surgery is completed prior to radiation, wound-healing problems that occur with significant frequency with post-radiation surgery are minimized, and only a single surgery is necessary.
If you think you may benefit from oncoplastic breast surgery, consultation ahead of lumpectomy surgery is suggested.
Over time, breast surgery for breast cancer has evolved from severely deforming surgical procedures toward less and less disfiguring procedures and consequently improved cosmetic results. Oncoplastic surgery is not for everyone or every tumor - oncoplastic surgery is only appropriate for carefully selected patients. Breast size, tumor size and location,the ability of the surgeon to remove the tumor with adequate margins, and a woman’s goals and expectations are all factors that collectively determine whether or not oncoplastic surgery is a good option. In the event that breast conservation is not an option or not desirable, state-of-the-art methods of natural-tissue reconstruction after mastectomy may be an excellent option.
Contact us if you would like to make an appointment and learn more about your options for breast conservation and oncoplastic surgery.