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Dr. Borgen on the Decision to Undergo a Mastectomy

Patrick Borgen, MD
Published: Tuesday, Mar 19, 2013

Patrick Borgen, MD, chair, Department of Surgery, director, Maimonides Breast Cancer Center, details the factors that go into a patient's decision to undergo a mastectomy.

Evidence says that lumpectomy and radiation is equal to mastectomy, in terms of the ability to cure breast cancer. However, evidence also indicates a lower chance of recurrence with mastectomy. Outside of this, Borgen believes that external factors such as high-profile patients like celebrities undergoing double mastectomies for a small breast cancer greatly influences a patient’s decision.

In general, breast cancer is in the news every day, which plays a role in how women with breast cancer make their treatment decision. However, outside of these factors, Borgen does not believe that doctors are talking women into unneeded mastectomies, but rather that American women as a whole are highly educated and biased in regard to the disease.

Patrick Borgen, MD, chair, Department of Surgery, director, Maimonides Breast Cancer Center, details the factors that go into a patient's decision to undergo a mastectomy.

Evidence says that lumpectomy and radiation is equal to mastectomy, in terms of the ability to cure breast cancer. However, evidence also indicates a lower chance of recurrence with mastectomy. Outside of this, Borgen believes that external factors such as high-profile patients like celebrities undergoing double mastectomies for a small breast cancer greatly influences a patient’s decision.

In general, breast cancer is in the news every day, which plays a role in how women with breast cancer make their treatment decision. However, outside of these factors, Borgen does not believe that doctors are talking women into unneeded mastectomies, but rather that American women as a whole are highly educated and biased in regard to the disease.


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