Breast Cancer: a serious disease that claims far too many lives.
Breast cancer will, more often than not, require surgery to remove the tumor from the breast. For breast cancer in stage I or II, a lumpectomy or quadrantectomy, in conjunction with radiation therapy, is just as effective as a mastectomy. Lumpectomies and quadrantectomies are breast cancer surgeries generally classified as breast-conserving surgeries because they do not require the surgeon to remove all of the breast tissue.
A lumpectomy removes only the tumor and marginal amounts of surrounding tissue. The amount of the breast removed during a lumpectomy will vary from case to case, depending on the size of the tumor. Lumpectomies are typically followed by radiation therapy to ensure that any remaining cancer cells are destroyed. A lumpectomy may also be performed for any kind of abnormal, noncancerous, or precancerous lumps. You may not be a candidate for a lumpectomy if you have multiple tumors in different quadrants of your breast, if you have scleroderma, or if you have a large tumor and small breast, which could result in a unsatisfactory cosmetic appearance.
Click here watch a lumpectomy.
As the name suggests, a quadrantectomy removes one-quarter of the breast. A Quadrantectomy is a removes more breast tissue than a lumpectomy, in an effort to ensure that as much of the cancerous tissue is removed as possible while still sparing the majority of the breast. Whenever a portion of the breast is removed, the shape of your breast could change. If this is the case for you, consult with your doctor about reconstructive breast surgeries after breast cancer surgery.
Breast Cancer: By the Numbers
For the year 2013:
- Estimated new cases: 232,340 (About 14% of all new cancer cases)
- Deaths from breast cancer: 39,620 (About 7% of all cancer deaths)
- 89.2% of those with breast cancer survive five years or more. In 1980 that percentage was about 75%.
- Approximately 12.3 percent of women will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some point in their lifetime.
- An estimated 2,829,041 women in the United States currently live with breast cancer.
Source: SEER, Surveillance Epidemiology, and End Results Program