Sunday, June 26, 2016

Mastectomy Overseas

What is Mastectomy?

Mastectomy is a surgery performed to remove the entire breast tissues in order to treat breast cancer or as a preventive measure against it. A patient usually has to choose between lymphectomy and mastectomy. Lymphectomy is where only the cancerous part of the breast is removed, conserving the rest of the breast.

Due to the advancements in surgical techniques, the breast skin in Mastectomy can now be conserved so that reconstructive breast surgery may be performed to regain natural looking breast appearance. Breast reconstruction may be done at the same time as Mastectomy or after a certain period of time through a breast reconstruction surgery.

Mastectomy takes about 2-3 hours to be performed. Serious recovery period is required after Mastectomy so return trip should be planned accordingly. Also, patients need at least one visit to the doctor after the surgery for the removal of surgical drains.

Number of Days in Hospital
1-3 Days
Average Length of Stay Abroad
1-2 Weeks

How Inexpensive Is Mastectomy Overseas?

The cost for Mastectomy is not specified as it is usually covered by Health Insurance. If there is no health insurance, then a number of factors affect the cost for Mastectomy. Firstly, the cost depends upon whether the Mastectomy is Bilateral or Unilateral. It also depends upon the experience of the surgeon and the cost increases if breast reconstruction is to be done. The cost includes hospital fee, anesthesia fee, surgeon’s fee, medication fee etc.

Procedure For Mastectomy

Firstly, general anesthesia is given to the patient and then incisions are made around the breast to remove all the breast tissues and other parts of breast which need to be removed. If possible, skin-sparing surgery is performed, where the skin of the breast is conserved for reconstruction. Skin-Sparing surgery cannot be performed in cases where the tumor is very close to the skin. If it is demanded by the patient and if it possible, then the breast reconstruction surgery is performed along with Mastectomy.

Important Things To Know About Mastectomy
  • Some of the potential risks of Mastectomy are infection, pain, swelling, damage to nerves and hematoma.
  • Mastectomy is recommended for patients with early-stage breast cancer, DCIS, locally advanced breast cancer, inflammatory breast cancer and Paget’s disease. Also, it is chosen by patients as a preventive measure if they are at high risk for cancer.
  • Several weeks before surgery, patients are asked to stop taking medicines like aspirin which causes blood thinning and makes it hard for blood to clot.
  • After the surgery, the patient experiences pain around the site of incisions for which pain killers are prescribed by the doctor. Also, drainage tubes are attached until all the surgical drain is eliminated.
  • Mastectomy is the right choice if the tumor is larger than 5 cm or multiple lumpectomy has not resulted in the removal of cancer.


When is Mastectomy performed as a preventive measure against cancer?
A person may decide to have Mastectomy as a preventive measure against cancer if they have a family history of breast or ovarian cancer, if they have BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutation or if they have had LCIS.

How effective is Mastectomy in preventing cancer?
Mastectomy cannot completely prevent breast cancer. This is because of the fact that breast cancer tissues are not only present in the breasts but also in the arm pits, above collarbone and as far as abdomen.

What are the conditions under which I cannot have breast reconstruction with Mastectomy?
Some of the cases where the surgeon recommends the patient to have breast reconstruction later are, if the patient needs a radiation therapy after Mastectomy which may negatively affect the reconstructed breast and also, when it is important for the patient to have the chemotherapy immediately as the reconstruction takes time to heal.

How long will it take for the surgical drains to be removed?
It usually takes about a week for surgical drains to be removed. It also depends upon the healing process.

How long is the recovery period?
On an average it takes about 1-2 months to recover completely.

Source: medhalt

No comments:

Post a Comment