A lumpectomy is a surgery to remove a benign tumor or a cancerous lump in the breast. During a lumpectomy, the surgeon may also remove adjacent lymph nodes under the arm to see if the cancer has spread. A lumpectomy procedure is considered minimally invasive, as the lump can usually be removed through a small incision. Patients may discuss the placement and length of the lumpectomy incision with their physician. Because it involves the removal of only a small amount of tissue, a lumpectomy is considered a breast-preserving surgery, as opposed to a mastectomy, which removes all or a portion of the breast and is often followed by reconstructive breast surgery.
Lumpectomy is often followed by radiation therapy to destroy any remaining cancer cells and, in some cases, chemotherapy is given as well. Additional treatments include hormone therapy and immunotherapy.
For lumpectomy procedures and other treatments for breast cancer, patients in the New England area will find leading breast cancer surgeons and world-class care at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston. Patients have access to a wide range of treatment options, from breast-conserving surgery like a lumpectomy, to more aggressive or prophylactic treatment such as a radical or double mastectomy.