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What is a radical mastectomy?

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A radical mastectomy is the complete removal of the breast, including the nipple. The surgeon also removes the overlying skin, the muscles beneath the breast, and the lymph nodes. Because radical mastectomy isn't more effective than other less extreme forms of mastectomy, it's rarely performed today. It’s only recommended when the cancer has spread to the chest muscle.

SOURCES:

American Cancer Society: "Surgery for Breast Cancer."

National Comprehensive Cancer Network: "Breast Cancer: Treatment Guidelines for Patients."

Cancer Net: "Guide to Breast Cancer."

BreastCancer.org: "What is Mastectomy?"

John Hopkins Medicine: “Mastectomy.”

Reviewed by Laura J. Martin on March 17, 2019

SOURCES:

American Cancer Society: "Surgery for Breast Cancer."

National Comprehensive Cancer Network: "Breast Cancer: Treatment Guidelines for Patients."

Cancer Net: "Guide to Breast Cancer."

BreastCancer.org: "What is Mastectomy?"

John Hopkins Medicine: “Mastectomy.”

Reviewed by Laura J. Martin on March 17, 2019

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What is a modified radical mastectomy?

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