The Breast Cancer Program provides comprehensive care for women with breast disease — diagnosis, surgery, radiation treatment, drug and hormone therapies, reconstruction and ongoing support. Our physicians and staff work together to make sure all treatment and services you receive are completely coordinated.
DiagnosisBreast cancer is diagnosed through a combination of physical examination, imaging procedures and laboratory examination of breast tissues. The Breast Cancer Program offers patients the most advanced imaging technologies and diagnostic capabilities available.
Breast ImagingMammography, ultrasound and other imaging technologies are key to the early detection and accurate diagnosis of breast abnormalities. Our highly experienced radiologists and radiologic technologists provide the full range of breast imaging procedures for breast cancer screening and treatment planning.
Laboratory analysis of breast tissue samples is required at many stages of the diagnosis and treatment process. The pathologists in the Breast Cancer Program devote their practice to evaluating breast abnormalities. They provide comprehensive breast pathology services that guide breast cancer surgery and help physicians plan the most effective post-surgical care.
Breast cancer is a complex disease, and treating it requires the cooperation of several different kinds of cancer specialists. The Breast Cancer Program includes a complete team of specialists in breast surgery, radiation oncology, medical oncology, reconstruction and follow-up care. These physicians work together to develop a comprehensive treatment plan for each patient.
SurgeryMost women with breast cancer require surgery to remove the cancerous tissue. The highly experienced surgeons in the Breast Cancer Program are skilled in the techniques of breast conserving therapy. Whenever possible, they offer surgical options that allow the patient to preserve her breasts while achieving long-term cancer control. In addition, various types of mastectomies can be offered to women who require or desire removal of the whole breast.
Radiation oncologyRadiation therapy plays a key role in helping many women with breast cancer preserve their breasts. The Breast Cancer Program includes radiation oncologists who focus their practice on treating breast disease. They are national leaders in developing new methods of delivering therapeutic radiation and shortening treatment courses.
Medical oncologyVarious forms of drug therapy can decrease the chance of a breast cancer recurring and help fight cancers that have spread to other parts of the body. The medical oncologists in the Breast Cancer Program have an in-depth understanding of current options in chemotherapy, hormonal therapy and advanced biological drugs.
Breast reconstructionFor many women with breast cancer, breast reconstruction is an important step toward regaining a sense of personal wholeness. The Breast Cancer Program includes world-leading plastic and reconstructive surgeons who are trained in the most advanced reconstructive techniques available following mastectomy, including muscle-sparing DIEP Flap breast reconstruction.
Lymphedema careSome women who receive treatment for breast cancer develop lymphedema, a swelling of the arm or hand caused by the accumulation of lymphatic fluid. Patients in the Breast Cancer Program have access to a board-certified physical medicine and rehabilitation physician and trained therapists who specialize in lymphedema care and rehabilitation for breast cancer survivors.
Support Services The Breast Cancer Program provides a full range of support services designed to support women at every step of their cancer journey.
CoordinatorsWomen facing a diagnosis of breast cancer are often overwhelmed by information, treatment options, life changes and emotional stress. A new patient coordinator, working closely with nurses and other staff from the Breast Cancer Program, makes sure patients get all the appointments, tests, treatments, services and support they need.
Breast Cancer Cognitive Evaluation ServiceSome cancer patients experience changes in cognition or their ability to think. The Breast Cancer Cognitive Evaluation Service is a unique resource that helps detect cognitive changes early and provide women with assistance and interventions to alleviate cognitive challenges.
Support GroupsWomen with breast cancer and their families can also find emotional and social support:
- ABCD, or After Breast Cancer Diagnosis - an organization that provides much-needed support. ABCD pairs newly diagnosed women with mentors who help women get through treatment and beyond.
- Cancer Caregivers Support Group – a group that provides emotional support, sharing and information for anyone caring for a loved one who has been diagnosed with cancer.
Find out more about cancer support groups.
High Risk Breast Cancer ProgramWomen with a strong family history of breast cancer (or any women who are concerned about breast disease) will benefit from knowing more about their real risk. Our experienced team of counselors will assess your risk factors and help you understand your true risk status. They work with you to develop a personalized health plan that can help reduce your risk of breast cancer. This service includes:
- Documentation of your family health history and personal medical history
- Thorough clinical breast examination
- Consultation with the Cancer Genetics Screening Program (including genetic counseling and BRCA testing when warranted)
- Nutritional counseling
- Individualized recommendations and education
Last Review Date: June 5, 2013
Online Editor(s): Tamara Kroll