Tumorectomy & Lumpectomy

Surgery is a basic one for breast cancer treatment.


Seins de face This breast surgery is performed in order to withdraw the breast lesion, and a part of healthy tissues around it: the breast is fully conserved, as well as the pectoralis major muscle where the breast is laid on - except when the tumor is adhering to it.
Incision can be made over the tumor or at more concealed locations like the edge of the areola or within the crease below the breast , in order to make sure the scarf is as discrete as possible. A redon’s drain can be left in place for a couple of days in order to prevent any hematoma.
With no pre-operative biopsy:
- Palpable mammographic lesion: withdrawn tissue will be sent to a pathologist for microscopic examination, while the patient is kept under general anesthesia (extemporaneous exam). If the analyses reveal cancerous cells, an axillary lymph node dissection will be performed.
- When the tumor is too small (only a few millimeters), the extemporaneous exam is not an option. The final diagnosis will be known a few days later.


The lumpectomy is the excision of a non palpable mammographic lesion (micro calcifications, opacity). A complementary mammographic or sonographic exam will be realized. At this stage, a fine metallic wire – called "harpoon" - will be installed in the concerned area, in order to guide the practionner during the surgery. This procedure is performed either the day before the surgery or the day of the surgery.

If no complementary procedure is requested (sentinel lymph node method), the intervention is done as an outpatient procedure (check in the morning / check out the afternoon). During the post-operation exam - around 3 weeks after the surgery - your surgeon will present you all therapeutics solutions, issued from a collective analysis by a multidisciplinary staff.

Risks & Complications

Even if surgery procedures and technics are meticulous, it is not possible to guarantee neither therapeutic success nor a complete absence of intraoperative complications.

During the operation

Blood loss: may rarely lead to a blood transfusion.


- Blood tumor or abscess: It is a pocket of blood or pus that may sometimes lead to a surgery. A redon’s drain can be implanted per-operatory to avoid it.
Generally requires local care, but a surgical evacuation may be an option
- Cutaneous necrosis: it’s linked to a default of the healing process, and may rarely lead to another surgery.

Last update: 10/2/2012