Dr. Benjamin D. Smith on Mastectomy Versus Lumpectomy for Early Breast Cancer

Benjamin D. Smith, MD

Benjamin D. Smith, MD, associate professor and research director of breast radiation oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, discusses complications with mastectomy versus lumpectomy for early breast cancer.

The risk of complications from mastectomy plus reconstruction was increased by two-fold compared with lumpectomy plus whole breast irradiation after adjustment for other treatment differences in both, says Smith. Compilations include wound breakdown, infection and fluid in the surgical cavity. Complications with implants or with the graph that is used to do the reconstruction can also occur and can be serious, says Smith.

Many women falsely assume that the risk of recurrence is higher with lumpectomy than mastectomy. Evidence does not suggest this to be true, says Smith.

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