Breast Surgery Research and Clinical Trials

Surgeons within the Division of Breast Surgery provide daily care to patients while also devoting their time and expertise to research. As active physician-scientists, our surgeons move discoveries from concept to research to direct patient care—pioneering life-changing approaches that improve diagnoses, treatment techniques and quality of life.

Our surgeons are investigating breast disease on multiple fronts, including:

  • Personalizing prevention strategies
  • Patient satisfaction and quality of life
  • Optimizing multidisciplinary treatment planning, including surgery, systemic therapy and radiation
  • Less invasive surgical techniques
  • Breast cancer in young women
  • Advanced imaging modalities to reduce the need for multiple surgeries [Advanced Multimodality Image Guided Operating (AMIGO)] Suite
  • Improved understanding of the environment around the breast tumor, including blood vessels, immune cells and other biological components (referred to as the tumor microenvironment)

Breast Surgery Research Projects

  • Analyzing patient-reported outcomes in breast cancer surgery.
  • Studying management of the axilla after preoperative systemic chemotherapy with particular focus on individual tumor features.
  • Using artificial intelligence to predict the likelihood of cancer in women with a biopsy of atypical ductal hyperplasia (ADH).
  • Individualizing treatment options for women with non-invasive disease including ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) and lobular carcinoma in situ (LCIS).
  • Examining surgical techniques and advanced imaging modalities to optimize surgical treatments and outcomes.
  • Studying the tumor microenvironment to better understand the immune response to breast cancer.

If appropriate, your surgeon will discuss opportunities for you to participate in one of our current research studies.

Breast Surgery Clinical Trials

These are just a few breast cancer trials that may be available to you. Visit the clinical trials page to access a complete list of all breast cancer clinical trials open to new participants. Your surgeon will discuss these opportunities with you further.

Selection of Recently Published Projects

Prevention and Early Disease

Patient Centered Outcomes and Disparities

Tailored Local Therapy

Tumor Immunology

  • Yam C, Yen EY, Chang JT, Bassett RL, Alatrash G, Garber H, Huo L, Yang F, Philips AV, Ding QQ, Lim B, Ueno NT, Kannan K, Sun X, Sun B, Parra Cuentas ER, Symmans WF, White JB, Ravenberg E, Seth S, Guerriero JL, Rauch GM, Damodaran S, Litton JK, Wargo JA, Hortobagyi GN, Futreal A, Wistuba II, Sun R, Moulder SL, Mittendorf EA. Immune Phenotype and Response to Neoadjuvant Therapy in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer. Clin Cancer Res. 2021.

Quality Improvement Initiatives

Support Our Breast Surgery Research

Your contributions to our research will provide even better care for the next generation of patients and their families. Your contributions can be directed in many ways, such as:

  • Tailoring therapy based on tumor type
  • Improving surgical processes, techniques and protocols
  • Improving the patient experience and optimizing quality of life after breast cancer treatment
  • Developing new prevention strategies for women at increased risk
  • In depth analysis of the tumor and surrounding immune cells to identify ways to mobilize a patient’s own immune system to fight their cancer

Learn how you can support our breast surgery research projects.

Learn more about Brigham and Women's Hospital

For over a century, a leader in patient care, medical education and research, with expertise in virtually every specialty of medicine and surgery.

About BWH