Oncoplastic breast surgery combines the principles of breast cancer surgery and plastic surgery to achieve a superior aesthetic result. Breast conservation therapy with lumpectomy and radiation usually yields satisfactory cosmetic results. However, breast preservation can result in contour irregularities and 20-30 percent of patients are dissatisfied with the appearance of their breasts after treatment.
Oncoplastic breast surgery techniques allow the cancer surgeon to remove more breast tissue with a wider margin around the cancer. Immediately following the cancer removal, the plastic surgeon then uses plastic surgery techniques to optimize the cosmetic outcome.
Am I an Oncoplastic Breast Surgery Candidate?
Oncoplastic breast surgery is best performed at the same time as the lumpectomy to allow the plastic surgeon the opportunity to give the best cosmetic result possible. Depending on the size of the breast, the breast may need to have volume added, removed or rearranged in order to achieve a good aesthetic outcome.
Patients with large breasts may benefit from an oncoplastic breast reduction, which removes the cancer in combination with the tissue normally removed during a standard breast reduction. This allows for a larger resection and potentially decreases the risk for local recurrence of breast cancer. Additional benefits may include alleviation of the common concerns of patients with large breasts including neck pain, back pain, grooves in the shoulders from bra straps and skin irritation under the breasts.
Patients with dropping breasts (referred to as ptosis) but without the excess volume may also be candidates for oncoplastic surgery. Breast cancers may be approached through the same incision used in a breast lift (mastopexy) and can be performed at the same time. In this way, the cancer is removed and the breast is given a more youthful look.
Patients who have already undergone lumpectomy and radiation and are dissatisfied with the look of their breasts are also candidates for reconstruction. Although this can be challenging to correct, an improvement of the breast appearance can often be achieved by employing these oncoplastic techniques.
Please read the following pages if you wish for more information about your breast reconstruction options:
- Tissue Expander and Implant Based Breast Reconstruction
- Autologous Tissue Breast Reconstruction (Flaps)
Schedule Your Consultation
If you wish to learn more about using your own tissue for breast reconstruction, please schedule a consultation with one of our plastic surgeons. During your consultation, your concerns will be addressed and you will be educated about your breast reconstruction options. Together, we can develop a personalized treatment plan to achieve your reconstructive goals.