Breast Lump Excision

Breast lump removal is surgery to remove a lump that may be breast cancer. This surgery is called an excisional breast biopsy, or lumpectomy.

Breast lump could be due to hormonal changes, and in some cases may disappear naturally without medical intervention. However, it is advised to seek medical advice

If the tumor is cancerous, a Lumpectomy may have to be followed by radiation or chemotherapy. The radiation or chemotherapy destroys the cancer cells in your breast.

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What is Breast Lump Excision?

Breast Lump excision is also referred to as lumpectomy surgery and is a minimally invasive surgery.

Under this procedure, the doctor removes a part of the breast to maintain the breast's appearance, function, and sensation.  Lumpectomy unlike mastectomy may have to be followed by radiation or chemotherapy.

The radiation or chemotherapy is to ensure that the cancer cells are destroyed if any.

Breast Lump Excision: Pre-surgery

If the tumor is not felt or seen, the surgeon might locate the tumor by a mammogram or an ultrasound and mark the tumor area on the patient's breast to identify during the surgery where the incision is to be made.

The patient is given local or general anesthesia before the surgery and made to settle.

Breast Lump Excision: Surgery Procedure

The surgeon might use an electric scalpel or a curved one for an incision. The lump is then removed with a rim of the adjoining tissue. 

The surgery might be done with an electric scalpel that makes the use of heat to minimize bleeding or curved incisions for the natural curve of the breast for better healing.

If the tumor can be seen or felt, the surgeon will remove it along with a rim of healthy tissue around it, to ensure the entire infection is removed.

Post-surgery, the lump is sent for further testing. In some cases, the doctor may remove lymph nodes, under the arms on the side of your breast. They are also sent for testing to check if cancer has spread.

In some patients, a rubber tube is inserted into the breast during the surgery to remove the excess fluid that might accumulate in the space from where the tumor was removed.

The rubber tube is then connected to a bulb or a sac where the drained liquid is gathered. Finally, the incision is stitched, closed, and dressed.

Breast Lump Excision: Post Surgery

  • After the surgery, the patient is moved to the recovery room and monitored for life signs like heart rate, blood pressure, and body temperature.

  • A general check is done on how the anesthesia is wearing off and if there are any post-effects.

  • Once you stabilize you will be moved to the hospital room.

  • Lumpectomy is an outpatient procedure and you can proceed home the same day. However, if you are not stable enough, the doctor might recommend an overnight stay in the hospital.

Breast Lump Excision: Risks involved

Any surgery might carry the risk of infection or bleeding.

  • The common observations post-surgery are swelling and numbness in the breast.

  • Change in shape of the breast.

  • The radiation therapy post lumpectomy is scheduled five times a week for five to seven weeks after surgery. 

Breast Lump Excision: Recovery stage

The surgical area would experience some crawly sensation, itching, and supersensitivity to touch as some of the aftereffects of surgery and recovery. 

The sensation might subside on its own or you may get accustomed to them. However, the patient should consult a doctor in case it is too much of a discomfort.

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