And it was noted that as far as breast cancer surgery is concerned, a relatively wider scope could result in the patients getting better outcomes. Breast tissue removal during partial mastectomies could minimize the need for breast cancer patients getting a second surgery for removing their cancer as reported by a new study. In US, about 150, 000 breast cancer patients go through a partial mastectomy every year and such findings can significantly boost their health outcomes.

Improving health outcomes of breast cancer patients

Yale University released a press statement saying that between 20 and 40% of patients diagnosed with breast cancer could be having cancerous tissues just near the tissue edges which the surgeon could remove during a partial mastectomy. Those cells that remain are known as positive margins and what this essentially means is that there is a high likelihood of the breast cancer coming back and this could possibly necessitate a second surgery.

Known as lumpectomy at times, a partial mastectomy is a kind of surgery for breast cancer where a part of breast gets removed. American Cancer Society notes that the margins of the tumor could be positive when the cancer cells tend to extend out of the tissue edge and negative when the tissues don’t have any cancer cells or close for a situation that falls between negative and positive. But despite great efforts being undertaken, surgeons were not able to predict if the cancer was somehow close to edge or not. However, when more tissue was removed by the surgeons all around where breast cancer tumor was, referred to as the cavity shave margins, there was a low likelihood of the patients being left having positive margins.

Partial mastectomy

By taking the cavity shave margins, the rate of positive margin is essentially cut in half with the cosmetic outcome not being compromised in any way or the complication rate increasing. The conclusions were arrived at after 235 patients of breast cancer were studied and who went through partial mastectomy. And after the surgery was completed, there was random assigning of the patients to have the extra tissue removed or simply left intact. The age of the patients essentially ranged between 33 and 94 years with 61 being the media age.

For the patients whose additional tissue was not removed, 33.6% of them showed positive margins after partial mastectomy. For patients who opted for the removal of the additional tissue surrounding the site of the tumor, the figure was just 19.3 percent and this certainly means that the need for additional surgery for breast cancer was not likely. The randomized control trial is likely to impact greatly on breast cancer patients. There is no person who would like to visit the operating room again considering the emotional burden that comes with the second surgery.