If your most recent mammogram or breast exam uncovered a lump that turned out to be cancerous, you may be worried about your prognosis or uncertain what comes next. Good Samaritan Hospital’s Cancer Care Center provides comprehensive treatment with compassionate understanding, and our professionals can guide you through the following steps:
Consulting a Surgeon
Breast lumps that are identified as cancerous are often removed surgically, so your radiologist may refer you to a surgeon in order to discuss your options. These include breast-conserving surgery, which only removes the cancerous portion, and total mastectomy, which involves the complete removal of the affected breast.
Depending on the extent to which the cancer has spread, you may need to treat it with radiation or chemotherapy in addition to surgery. Radiation therapy kills cancer cells using targeted X-rays or a small amount of radioactive material placed near the tumor. It is often used after surgery to ensure that all cancer is removed. In contrast, chemotherapy involves the intravenous infusion of medication to prevent cancer cells from dividing. Unfortunately, it also affects the body’s healthy cells, causing a multitude of side effects, so be sure to discuss its risks and benefits with your physician. On top of these therapies, your doctor may prescribe medications to counteract estrogen and boost your immune system.
Seeking Emotional Support
Dealing with breast cancer can be stressful, harrowing, and isolating, which is why many patients find comfort in talking to others in their situation. Sharing tips and personal experiences can be highly empowering, and such social support may improve your mood and emotional outlook, benefiting your overall wellbeing.
Good Samaritan Hospital is dedicated to providing cutting-edge treatment for a variety of cancer types. Our cancer support group meets every Wednesday at 10 am and is open to patients, survivors, family members, and close friends. Call our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (888) 724-2362 for more information.