Surgery is recommended as the primary treatment of breast cancer in pregnant women. Since radiation in therapeutic doses may expose the fetus to potentially harmful scatter radiation, modified radical mastectomy is the treatment of choice. Conservative surgery with postpartum radiation therapy has been used for breast preservation. An analysis has been performed that helps to predict the risk of waiting to have radiation.[3,4]
If adjuvant chemotherapy is necessary, it should not be given during...
Besides removing the breast, radical mastectomy is a rarely performed surgery that also takes out lymph nodes in the arm pit and part of the chest wall. See a drawing of the area covered and read a short description.
During a modified radical mastectomy, the surgeon removes the breast (including the skin, breast tissue, areola, and nipple) and most of the lymph nodes under the arm. This surgery is now more commonly performed than the radical mastectomy as it has proven to be more effective and less disfiguring. Learn more about how this surgery is performed.