Many advances in breast cancer treatment have been observed over the past 30 years. “Tremendous progress has been made in all phases of care,” confirms Dr. Delphine Argo, Specialist Radiotherapy for Hospital Group (GH) Brittany Sud Lorient. Not to mention that screening has allowed some treatments to be eased. Treatments are also more and more efficient. “Today, we’re talking about recovery, not just recovery,” says Dr. Josiane Bruce Potocki, medical director at the Cancer Screening Coordination Center in Brittany.
More and more conservative surgeries
If surgery is indicated to treat most localized tumors, it is often supplemented with one or more treatments aimed at preventing possible relapses (radiotherapy, chemotherapy, hormonal therapy, all of which are subject to ongoing research). But the operation is not necessarily synonymous with excision (“mastectomy” or “mastectomy”). About 70% of surgeries are performed without a mastectomy. “Mastectomy is not systematic, far from it! Dr. Guillaume Pera, radiotherapist at GH Bretagne Sud-Lorient says. “Two generations ago, we removed almost the entire breast systematically; Which is no longer the case today. We do our best to maintain the patient’s body image and reduce residual pain,” adds her colleague, Dr. Argo.
“But it really all depends on what you find at the time of diagnosis: the profile of the cancer, the age of the patient, etc.,” says Allen Thomas, an oncology nurse at Baie de Morlex Hospital Center. “We have developed the most appropriate treatment possible,” confirms, for his part, Dr. Mathilde Lebreton, a surgeon at the Eugene Marques Cancer Center in Rennes. So today’s medicine tends to be more and more precision and targeted therapies more and more.
Significant advances in reconstruction techniques
But sometimes a patient can’t escape a mastectomy: “It is indicated when the tumor, compared to the breast, means that it cannot be preserved, so it really depends on the size of the tumor. Schematically, if we make a cup and the tumor is 3 cm, We’d have to do a resection; on the other hand, if the patient was wearing a D cup, we wouldn’t have to,” says Dr. Lieberton. She assures him: “When we remove the breast, we offer breast reconstruction. Every patient should be able to have the reconstruction. Be careful, in some cases there are contraindications which means we cannot immediately.” Here, too, “there have been great strides in reconstruction techniques,” says Dr. Argo.
However, not all patients want to go into the process of breast reconstruction: “Reconstruction is not on/off! It is a journey that takes approximately ten to twelve months. You have to be motivated and committed to the project in parallel with the treatment. Some women prefer a treatment Cancer and they tell themselves “we’ll see later”; others tell us “I don’t want reconstruction,” Dr. Lebreton explains.
Today there are various reconstruction techniques (by prosthetics and / or fat formation, or using special tissues).
Some lingerie brands also offer post-operative ranges that are adapted to women who have had breast surgery (with pockets that allow them to wear a breast prosthesis).
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