Breast Conserving Surgery Does Not Compromise Survival, Studies Find

For the thousands of women diagnosed with breast cancer annually in the United States, a number of recent studies have indicated that rushing in for a mastectomy might not be the only option available to successfully battle the disease. Breast conserving surgery, known as a lumpectomy, has stood up well when used in conjunction with chemotherapy and radiation both.

One study looked at a number of women who underwent neoadjuvant chemotherapy and lumpectomies both. The retrospective study showed a long-term, disease-free survival rate that was rather positive. Another study conducted in the Netherlands involved an analysis of thousands of patient files. Researchers there found that lumpectomy outcomes when coupled with radiation were much more positive than outcomes for women who underwent mastectomies alone.

The bottom line, researchers are finding, is that when lumpectomies are medically indicated, they can produce the results women and their healthcare providers are after. This procedure, however, does seem to perform better when also combined with radiation, chemotherapy or both.

Despite research showing that lumpectomies can successfully treat cancer, the mastectomy rate, especially prophylactic double mastectomy rates, are on the rise in some countries. The popularity of this double breast removal procedure has been on the rise since Angelina Jolie opted to take the preventive measure in 2013.
Nearly 250,000 American women will be diagnosed with breast cancer over the course of the next year. Those who do receive this diagnosis are urged to discuss all treatment options with their healthcare providers. When lumpectomies are indicated as a treatment option, research is supporting the benefits that can go along with this breast-conserving therapy.

All women are also urged to talk with their doctors about breast cancer prevention and early screening. This disease, when caught early, is often highly treatable using a variety of techniques now available. Early detection, however, is often critical for treatment success.

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