Breast surgery

Also known as: Breast augmentation, breast reconstruction, Mastectomy, Radical mastectomy, modified mastectomy, Breast conserving surgery, lumpectomy, Breast preservation surgery, partial mastectomy, re-excision, quadrantectomy, wedge resection, tylectomy, segmental excision, wide excision

Surgery on the breast may be done for a number of reasons including:

As local treatment for breast cancer:
Breast surgery is considered the primary treatment for breast cancer in women and men. The amount of breast tissue removed, breast conserving (AKA lumpectomy) vs. mastectomy, is determined by a number of factors including the size and number of tumors, the location of the tumors and the risk of recurrence. Breast surgery to treat cancer is usually performed by a general surgeon.

For more information about cancer care near you, visit Providence Cancer Center.

Augmentation or reduction
Breast augmentation (enlargement) or reduction is usually done for cosmetic reasons and performed by a plastic surgeon. Sometimes, breast reduction is considered a medical necessity and is covered by insurance. This is usually if the size of the breast causes headaches; pain in the neck, shoulders or upper back; kyphosis (curving of the spine that causes hunching over); or, pain from bra straps cutting into the shoulders.

Breast reconstruction
Breast reconstruction is usually performed by a plastic surgeon and is most often done to rebuild the size and shape of a breast after it has been removed (mastectomy) to treat breast cancer. In the U.S. insurances are required to cover breast reconstruction following mastectomy for the breast that was removed, as well as the opposite breast to achieve the best possible symmetry. Reconstruction can be done using a number of different synthetic and natural materials.

For more information about these types of breast surgery, click on the hyperlinks above or visit our Health Information Library.

At Providence, achieving optimal breast health and providing world-class treatment for breast cancer are equal priorities in our continuing mission to improve women’s health. Providence Breast Centers offer comprehensive access to state-of-the-art diagnostic imaging techniques to ensure accurate and timely diagnoses.

Proprietary Health Article

Casting a light on lumpectomy

An optical fiber may transform how small breast lesions are located and removed.

Recommended Resource

American Cancer Society

American Cancer Society’s home page with links to all types of cancer, symptoms, treatment options, statistics trials and ways to contribute.