Woman talking with doctor about screening results

Breast cancer screening can save your life

Getting screened regularly is the best way to catch breast cancer early. Perform regular breast self-exams, schedule your next screening and talk to your doctor to find out your risk.

COVID-19 - APPOINTMENTS AND PROCEDURES

Your health and safety is still our top priority. Appointments are available as video visits, phone calls or in-person visits as needed, with the same safe, world-class care you expect.

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Our breast cancer care team brings together unique expertise, sensitivity and state-of-the-art diagnostic tools for women's breast health. Our dedicated breast health experts, reconstructive surgeons, oncologists, nurses and staff are committed to treating your breast cancer and preserving healthy tissue.

At the Breast Health Center, we strive to provide whole person care. Unlike most centers, we add the spiritual, emotional and nutritional aspects of care into your treatment. We are with you every step of the way.

Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in women

3.1M breast cancer survivors in the US

13.5% Average risk of a woman in the US developing breast cancer

Why Choose Us for Breast Cancer Care

  • Regional leaders: At our Women's Imaging Center, you have access to the most advanced diagnostic capabilities in the region.
  • Risk evaluation: We help you uncover your risk for developing breast cancer, carrying a cancer-causing gene mutation or developing a second cancer.
  • Advanced technology: Your diagnosis and treatment include advanced technologies like digital mammography, tomosynthesis (3D mammography) and breast MRI.
  • Comprehensive services: Our center offers a wide range of services in one location, including surgery, medical oncology, reconstruction surgery and radiation medicine.
  • Leading treatments: We are one of the few centers offering proton therapy treatment for breast cancer in the United States.
  • Clinical trials: You may be eligible for a new therapy being developed in one of our breast cancer clinical trials.
  • Full support: Our Breast Health Center offers pastoral care, nutritional counseling, patient education and support groups.

Cancers and Conditions We Treat

We treat all cancerous and benign conditions of the breast.

  • Invasive ductal cancer
  • Ductal carcinoma
  • Invasive lobular cancer
  • Rare tumors including phyllodes tumors, secondary tumors of the breast and angiosarcomas
  • Benign conditions of the breast including fibroadenomas, infections, and granulomatous mastitis
  • High risk assessment for breast cancer and genetic testing

Screening

Regular screening is one of the most important steps in finding and successfully treating breast cancer early. The earlier breast cancer is found, the easier it is to treat.

Women with average breast cancer risk aged 50 to 74 should get screened every two years. If you're 40 to 49 years old, ask your doctor when you should start regular screening.

Breast cancer screening includes:

  • Clinical breast exam, where a health professional physically examines your breasts for potential issues.
  • Mammogram, an X-ray of the breasts that can detect cancer before it causes any symptoms.
  • Breast MRI, used to image the breasts of women at high risk for developing breast cancer.
photo of Dr. Sharon Lum
“Cancer doesn’t stop because of COVID-19, so don’t put off your screenings. I’m worried that in the next few years we will have a lot more advanced cancers because people just stopped coming in. It’s safe to come in — I got my screening despite the pandemic and so can you.”

What to Expect

What to Expect

Your First Visit

Most visits begin with a surgical oncologist consultation at the Women's Cancer and Surgical Oncology Clinic. Surgical oncologists are experts at diagnosing breast cancer, and seeing one doesn't necessarily mean you have cancer or need surgery.

Diagnosis

Our Women's Imaging Center has the latest screening technology for breast cancer. The most common tests for diagnosing breast cancer are imaging tests and biopsies, including:

  • Breast ultrasound, which uses sound waves to create images of the inside of your breast.
  • Diagnostic mammogram, a more precise version of your regular screening mammograms.
  • Breast MRI, used to create highly detailed images of tissues within your breast.
  • Biopsy, where small amounts of tissue or fluid are removed from your breast for further testing.

Staging

Staging is the process of testing how far breast cancer has spread in your body. Accurate staging is very important because each stage of breast cancer may require specific types of treatment. Our team has the experience needed to determine which of the following stages your breast cancer is in:

  • Stage 0: There isn't any cancer, but there are cells present that could become cancer.
  • Stage I: The cancer is contained to the breast and hasn't grown very much.
  • Stage II & III: The cancer has grown more and started affecting surrounding tissues like the lymph nodes under your arm.
  • Stage IV: The breast cancer has "metastasized" or spread to other parts of the body.

After your testing, a multi-disciplinary breast cancer team reviews the results to build your custom treatment plan. This team includes surgical, medical and radiation oncologists as well as pathologists and psychologists.

Treatment

Your breast cancer treatment plan will be tailored to your unique needs. Your plan may include a number of different types of treatment, including:

  • Chemotherapy
  • Radiation therapy or proton therapy
  • Hormone therapy
  • Immunotherapy
  • Surgery

If you need breast cancer surgery, our surgeons will help you understand the procedure and its possible outcomes. Our breast cancer surgeons are experts in both standard procedures and the latest techniques and technologies, including:

  • Nipple sparing mastectomy, which preserves the nipple and surrounding skin.
  • Magseed localization, which uses a new "tracer" implant technology that very precisely locates a tumor within your breast. This helps guide your surgery, resulting in less damage to tissue and reducing the need for multiple surgeries. The Magseed is also more comfortable and less invasive than conventional guide-wires, which protrude from your skin.
  • Immediate breast reconstruction, which is performed right after full or partial mastectomies or oncoplastic surgery. Immediate breast reconstruction may be right for you depending on a number of factors, which we help you understand before surgery.

Support Resources

When you're in our care, our priority is caring for the whole you. We focus on providing compassionate care for every aspect of your life impacted by cancer. You'll find a fully supportive environment with access to a wide range of resources, including:

  • A dedicated nurse navigator
  • Pastoral care
  • Nutritional counseling
  • Patient education
  • Psychosocial care
  • Support groups
  • Symptom management experts

Take the Next Step

If you're concerned about breast cancer, we're here for you. To schedule a consultation with a breast cancer specialist, please call 800-78-CANCER or request more information.