MASTECTOMY DEFINITIONA mastectomy is a surgical procedure where one or both breasts are removed either to prevent or to treat breast cancer. For those who have early stage breast cancer, mastectomy is but one option.
MASTECTOMY PURPOSEMastectomy is often performed to remove all breast tissues after they are found to have cancers. It is also performed on high risk patients to prevent any occurrence of breast cancer. One or both breasts may be removed during the procedure as required by the patient’s condition.
MASTECTOMY RISKSAs with any type of surgery, there are common risks that come with mastectomy. However, they are often mild and are not causes for concern. Bleeding, swelling, pain, and infection may occur but unless they are persistent or have become worse, your doctor will only advise the first line of treatment for your symptoms.
MASTECTOMY PREPARATION REQUIRED
Before a mastectomy, make sure that you have discussed all available options. You must also be briefed regarding the procedure and its usual effects. Your doctor will need to review your medical history to ensure that you do not have any condition that may affect the result of the procedure. You may also be given special instructions regarding medications and food intake.
MASTECTOMY PROCEDUREMastectomy is an umbrella term for different procedures for breast cancer patients. It involves different procedures that may involve one or both breasts and the lymph nodes on the armpits. How it is done depends on what needs to be done. But basically, the first step is giving you general anesthesia. After that, the incision will be made and all breast tissues and nodes that need to be removed will be removed.
Regardless of what kind of mastectomy you opted for, the tissues removed will be sent to a laboratory for further analysis. This will help your doctor make a more definitive diagnosis and develop a more appropriate line of treatment.
MASTECTOMY COMPLICATIONSThere are no known complications of a mastectomy other than the common risks that come with surgery.
MASTECTOMY SIDE EFFECTSThe most obvious side effect of mastectomy is losing your breast altogether. If you do not want to undergo the difficulty of dealing with losing one or both of your breasts, you may undergo a breast reconstructive surgery after mastectomy.
MASTECTOMY RESULTSIn a week, your pathology report may be ready for your doctor to discuss. During a follow-up visit, your doctor will explain the report and its indications.