Breast cancer surgery is still one of the most common and widely practiced treatments for this epidemic disease. Surgery demonstrates good curative results for most forms of breast cancer and can take many individual forms and procedures. Although most women would rather avoid surgery and stick to conservative methods of treatment, there are new operations which allow many women the benefit of minimally invasive therapy which can work as well as the most drastic procedures, such as full mastectomy.
This investigation takes a look at surgical choices as part of a breast cancer therapy program.
Breast Cancer Surgery Options
In the past, most women who were diagnosed with breast cancer would have little choice for treatment. Virtually all patients underwent radical mastectomy surgery followed by radiation and/or chemotherapy.
As the non-surgical options improved, some women were spared the ordeal of surgery and were treated conservatively, with varying degrees of success.
As breast cancer treatment continued to evolve, a new procedure allowed women to remove the cancer, while still keeping their natural breasts. This operation, called a lumpectomy, is still one of the most used surgical techniques for cancers deemed to be found in the early to moderate stages of growth.
Some women still have to undergo a full mastectomy, although time has also improved the post-surgical options for breast cancer survivors, as well.
After lumpectomy, partial mastectomy or full mastectomy, the woman will be faced with the decision of whether or not to undergo breast reconstruction immediately after the removal or at some point in the future. Circumstances will dictate whether immediate reconstruction is available or not.
In most developed countries, this reconstructive surgery is covered under major medical insurance, since it is deemed necessary to preserve the sanctity of mind and body in treated women.
The majority of women who do undergo surgical breast repair receive prosthetic breast implants, in either silicone or saline varieties. Unfortunately, the risk for many complications, including capsular contracture, increases dramatically when implants are used in post-mastectomy patients, as opposed to women who undergo simple cosmetic breast augmentation.
However, there are still all-natural options for reconstruction available, including the TRAM flap, the Latisimmus dorsi reconstruction and the free tissue reconstruction.
Efficacy of Breast Cancer Surgery
It is crucial for all women to take an active role in preventing breast cancer. This includes going for regular breast exams and performing self breast exams as advised by a physician.
Detecting breast cancer early is the number one thing you can do to increase not only your chances for survival, but also provide yourself with more options for effective treatment.
If surgery is indicated for your particular form of cancer, be sure to discuss the best type of operative intervention, which will remove all the cancerous growth, but spare your anatomy as much damage as possible.
In some high risk cases, women may be advised to remove both breasts in order to prevent a recurrence of the disease in the unaffected side. Be sure to learn the facts about cancer and treatment before making any hasty decisions based on fear alone.