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Partial Mastectomy
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Partial Mastectomy

Hello,
Hoping someone can give me some input here...
My mom has had breast cancer twice....both times she had lumpectomy.  On her regular mammogram this year, they detected "calcifications" and then sent her for a core biopsy.  Results thank god came back "clear" but the doctor said that they had removed 90% of the tissue, and if she wanted to be 100% sure she could have surgery to remove the rest of it.
So she had the surgery today - first they put in the hook needle, and then she had surgery to remove.  
My question - the first two procedures were called "lumpectomies" - this one was referred to as a "partial mastectomy"......they say that they "code" it that way any time they remove breast tissue.  We were very alarmed at this as my mom did not want to have anything substantial happen to her breast.  This was a precautionary surgery and she was told it may make her "a little smaller".....
Just the term "partial mastectomy" made her nervous.....some women can handle this better than others....although I'm sure its frightening for all.
My question, has anyone ever had a "partial mastectomy" and after a time of healing how did your breast look?  How did it affect the shape and size?  The doctor said the size of the tissue he removed was about 8cm and that for now, it will look "flat" but will fill out in time with all her normal body liquids and  by healing....
Would really appreciate some input....

Thanks Carsam
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8 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
i'm certainly not a doctor but this sounds like a small amount of tissue --my surgeoin referred to mine as a partial mastectomy but removed two piece--one was 12.6x6.5x3.8 cm and the other was 3.9x3.2x1.1 cm--of course ths is noticeable but 7 weeks after surgery my breast isn't that much smaller than the other one--being a c cup to start with miaght make a difference--the nipple also is off centre now--however this is really a very small price to pay to be rid of anything wrong going on in your breast--no one could tell when i am wearing a bra unless they really looked hard that i am a little uneven--just grateful to have cancer out of me--your mom wll probablyfill in just fine--let me know how this looks when surgery has healed up
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Avatar_n_tn
Thank you so much for your post - I really appreciate it and that makes me feel reassured on her behalf.....absolutely I do agree the most important thing is that  she is "okay"......
I will for sure let you know how she heals....many thanks again.

Carsam :)
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172023_tn?1334675884
All lumpectomies are really partial mastectomies, and I suspect that the reason the surgeon coded your mothers biopsy that way, had more to do with getting maximum insurance reimbursement than to what the surgery really was.

Its all about how it's coded and reimbursement.  Its not a lie, they did remove breast tissue.  But I'm sure they get more ihsurance $$ for a partial mastectomy than a biopsy.  

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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks peekawho....
I am so grateful for your response.  These two posts have really made me feel better.  I've been feeling so anxious since the surgery......
My mom's surgery was really scary.....when we went to admitting, she was asked to sign a consent form and the procedure was called "partial mastectomy"....
We were very adamant that we wanted to speak with the doctor before the surgery to confirm this was really a "lumpectomy"......my mom was so nervous.....
Dont know what happened but they said to wait outside and the doctor would come out and speak to us......all of a sudden my mom was gone and I said "where's my mother?  They said, "she's already gone in for surgery".....and I said "what do you mean, we wanted to speak with the doctor BEFORE the surgery.....
I really freaked out at them.....I told the nurse he better not touch her before he came out to see us.  I wanted to make sure my mom was really okay with going in for that surgery...because it was a big deal if we something was happenening to her breast that she was not expecting.  I was so angry at the doctor and I felt sick inside.  He sent his nurse out to talk to us as my mom was already asleep and he had scrubbed up already.  I said, "why didnt he come out first".....she said he couldnt come out, anyways, that the procedure was just like a lumpectomy and was moreso a "coding" thing......I wish he could have just come out and explained to us when my mom was with us......we were so worried for her, and werent sure if she was really okay with having the surgery or if she just didnt like to go against her doctor and was just hoping for the best...
But he explained everything afterwards and I felt okay about it.  She did look kind of "flat" but he said that was normal.......
And now these responses have put my mind at ease so I am really grateful to you both.

Thanks again!!!
Carsam
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi - there are so many new nomenclatues to this surgery now - I was told I was having a WLE? - what? it was a wide local excision, aka a lumpectomy, and in the distant past a modified partial mastectomy. The treatment for me, was so encouraging, as I never lost my boob. even through 2 surgeries,chemo and rads treatment. I think the medics try to blind you with science. My 2 cm tumour was just below the nipple, although I didn't know that before surgery as my tumour was not palpable, just showed up on a 3 yrly mammo.

Some 4 yrs later, the scar is almost invisible, but if your Mum is concerned about the size of her boob, tell her mine is 2 cups bigger than my other breast as I have lymphoedema in the bc boob- not a problem, no pain, just caused by the lymph node removal and I guess the fluid can't find somewhere to go. It doesn't look ugly or deformed.  I just put moisteuriser cream on it and massage it to the middle of my chest. Oh, for a toyboy!

Take care, Liz.
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Avatar_n_tn
Oh, that's encouraging.  So this surgery doesn't leave your chest looking flat (my mother had a total mastectomy 25 years ago, and it looked quite serious).  If what you describe  as the treatment for your 2 cm tumor was a partial, did you still have to have radiation and chemo?  My daughter is waiting for results of her biopsy (radiologist gave her a 50/50 chance of malignancy), and I'm trying to  plan for the next stage.  Your response to carsam dried my tears, as it looks hopeful. Thank you.
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Avatar_f_tn
I had a partial mastectomy 13 years ago, my tumor was large and the surgeon took 1/3 of my breast. My breast does not look much different today than it did before the surgery. I was glad to hear someone else has lymphedema of the breast. Every time I get sick my breast swells, hurts, and gets hard. This is the only drawback to my surgery.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hello everybody , I have a question. My girlfriend has a cancer tumor on theleft breast size 35x13 mm , 15 mm from mamilla . She had a lumpectomy operation 7 years ago for a small benign cyst at the same place. Doctor suggests mastectomy and SNB and breast reconstruction. My girlfriend has smal breast (A 80 size if I remember correctly) and doctor says not much will be left after a lumpectomy. He also say that the mamilla should also be removed. I am not sure and I need help from a doctor or someone with experience. We have limited time as she has been offered operation , on next monday...
I desperately read in all possible Iternet sites it seems to me that this could also be solved by a lumpectomy and radiation.
Can anyone here advice us please in a very hard situation ? We appreciate it very much.
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