Breast cancer care at Mayo

A doctor examining a patient

Mayo Clinic specialists provide compassionate care for people with breast cancer.

People with breast cancer who seek care at Mayo Clinic will find dedicated breast cancer specialists who provide expert, personalized care using the latest treatment innovations and technology.

Your Mayo Clinic care team

Tailoring Breast Cancer Screening to Each Woman’s Risk

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Watch Mayo Clinic specialists discuss breast cancer on YouTube

Breast health specialists in the Mayo Clinic Breast Clinic coordinate care for people with breast cancer. These internal medicine doctors who focus solely on caring for people with breast cancer and other breast conditions will meet with you to understand your needs and make arrangements for necessary tests and appointments. Often, your appointments can be coordinated over a matter of days in one facility.

Mayo Clinic offers a truly integrated practice, with a variety of specialists regularly working together and meeting to discuss cases. This ensures that you receive whole-person care that takes into account all of your needs. Your care team carefully weighs all of your treatment options to create a plan that's personalized for you.

Your breast cancer care team might include:

If you have other health conditions that could be affected by cancer treatment, your team may include additional specialists. For instance, cardiologists from the Cardio-Oncology Clinic may join your team if you have concerns related to your heart.

Doctors discussing cases

Mayo Clinic doctors from multiple specialties work together to determine the best treatment for each person with breast cancer.

Advanced diagnosis and treatment

Mayo Clinic doctors have access to the latest technology and techniques to diagnose and treat breast cancer, including clinical trials investigating the latest in medical innovation. Your breast cancer team keeps up on the latest evidence and incorporates this into your treatment plan.

Breast cancer diagnosis begins with high-quality breast imaging that draws from:

  • Highly trained staff. Imaging is done by radiologists who specialize in breast imaging, including many who've completed additional, advanced training programs.
  • Specialized screening. Experts create screening programs for people with dense breast tissue and those with a high risk of breast cancer using supplemental screening techniques.
  • Latest technology. Advanced imaging techniques include digital mammogram, 3-D mammogram (tomosynthesis), breast MRI and molecular breast imaging (MBI).
  • Ongoing research. Breast imaging researchers are studying new technology for diagnosing breast cancer, including dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI and contrast-enhanced digital mammogram.

The expertise and training of Mayo Clinic breast radiologists combined with advanced technology means your diagnosis can be made quickly and accurately.

A doctor talking with a patient before radiation therapy

Mayo Clinic breast cancer specialists offer the latest treatment options designed to increase the effectiveness of treatment and reduce side effects.

Breast cancer treatment innovations are improving the ability to control cancer while reducing the impact of treatment on your daily life and increasing your satisfaction with your appearance after surgery. Mayo Clinic achieves this by:

  • Offering a full range of treatment options, including surgery, chemotherapy, hormone therapy, radiation therapy, targeted drug therapy and clinical trials
  • Reducing the risk of heart damage in left-sided breast cancer by using innovative radiation therapy techniques to shape the energy beams around the tumor, such as proton therapy
  • Limiting lymph node removal to reduce the risk of surgery-related lymphedema by using techniques such as sentinel lymph node biopsy and neoadjuvant therapy
  • Avoiding the need for a second operation after lumpectomy with intraoperative pathology and frozen section analysis — procedures that involve pathologists analyzing tissue samples during surgery to make sure all the cancer is removed during the operation
  • Condensing treatment to less than 10 days so that people with small, low-risk tumors experience the smallest impact on their daily lives with an expedited breast cancer treatment combining lumpectomy and accelerated partial breast irradiation
  • Improving your confidence in your appearance after surgery by using innovative techniques that optimize the appearance of your reconstructed breast while maintaining excellent cancer control (oncoplastic surgery), such as combining lumpectomy with a breast lift or breast reduction
  • Utilizing advanced surgical techniques to perform muscle-sparing breast reconstruction techniques to create a new breast using your own tissue

The range of treatments available at Mayo Clinic means your care team has many options to create a personalized treatment plan that works for you.

A doctor meeting with a patient

Experienced Mayo Clinic specialists take the time to help you understand your options and help you feel confident in making decisions about your care.

Experience you can trust

Mayo Clinic doctors have extensive experience caring for people with breast cancer:

  • More than 10,000 people seek breast cancer care each year
  • Nearly 1,500 people undergo breast cancer surgery each year

Research shows that people who are treated for breast cancer at medical centers that treat many cases of breast cancer have better outcomes than do people treated at medical centers that treat breast cancer less frequently.

Mayo Clinic doctors specialize in care for:

A doctor explaining results to a patient

At Mayo Clinic, specialists consider your goals and preferences when designing a personalized treatment plan.

Personalized breast cancer treatment

Your breast cancer care team works closely with you to create a personalized treatment plan based on your particular situation, as well as your needs and goals.

Elements of a personalized care plan might include:

  • Reviewing all available treatment options. You'll have the opportunity to meet with a variety of specialists to help you understand all of your treatment options. Your appointments will be coordinated so you can make a timely decision about your care.
  • Creating convenient treatment schedules that reduce your need for additional travel and time when possible, such as lumpectomy with accelerated partial breast irradiation and mastectomy with immediate breast reconstruction. Mayo Clinic doctors can work with your local doctors to coordinate chemotherapy and other medicines so you won't always need to travel for care.
  • Coordinating supportive services. During and after treatment, you'll be connected to specialists who can help you heal and regain function, such as those who focus on rehabilitation, integrative medicine, sleep, women's health, nutrition, stress management and breast cancer survivorship.
  • Tailoring treatment based on genetics. Mayo Clinic doctors use personalized medicine for breast cancer to choose treatments based on your genetic makeup or the genetics of your cancer cells. Examples include testing for CYP2D6 before prescribing tamoxifen and analyzing tumor cells to select targeted drug treatments.
  • Connecting you to other breast cancer survivors. Your care team can connect you with support groups and mentorship programs that pair you with a cancer survivor who can answer questions and provide support.

The Mayo Clinic experience and patient stories

Our patients tell us that the quality of their interactions, our attention to detail and the efficiency of their visits mean health care like they've never experienced. See the stories of satisfied Mayo Clinic patients.

  1. Difficult Diagnosis Inspires Corinne Berg to Empower Others

    Corinne Berg was a little girl when she saw firsthand the devastating effects that breast cancer had on her family. Read the story of how Berg learned of her own risk for breast cancer and how she has used that experience to educate herself and others. By Corinne Berg I grew up in fear of [...]

  2. Navigating Breast Cancer With Support and Strength

    Brenda Braatz has been dealing with breast cancer since 2013. Although the diagnosis and its treatment haven't been easy, Brenda is thankful for the expert care, compassion and encouragement she's received from her Mayo team. On Jan. 4, 2013, Brenda Braatz stepped on a roller coaster and didn't get off for five years. At least [...]

  3. Couple Buoyed by Mayo Clinic Care in Sickness and Health

    For Gary and Carolyn Lockner, a trip to Mayo Clinic is more than a doctor's appointment. To the Lockners, Mayo Clinic not only provides physical healing, it also offers emotional support and renewed hope. Gary and Carolyn Lockner's love affair started more than 50 years ago when the two were college students at Bemidji State [...]

  4. Finding Breast Cancer Sooner

    Jan Jenswold wasn't concerned when she went in for her annual mammogram. Then the test picked up something suspicious, and a follow-up found that Jan had breast cancer. But the early diagnosis brought with it an optimistic prognosis. Today, with her cancer in the past, Jan now encourages others to make mammograms a priority. "I [...]

  5. Envisioning a Future Without Breast Cancer

    With coordinated care from a multidisciplinary team and participation in a research clinical trial, Stacy Hanson is successfully combating a daunting breast cancer diagnosis. When Stacy Hanson learned she was pregnant at 43, she was thrilled. But just after her daughter turned 2, she got news no mom wants to hear. She had breast cancer. [...]

  6. 2 Teams, 1 Mission: Defeat Breast Cancer

    Diagnosed with an aggressive form of breast cancer, Elena Blevins worked with providers at Phoenix Indian Medical Center and Mayo Clinic through a collaboration that provides patients with comprehensive cancer care. Elena Blevins spends much of her time caring for others. Her career as an aide takes her into the homes of elderly individuals, where [...]

  7. Living in the Present, Grateful for Life

    Buoyed by her Mayo Clinic care team, Kellie Leasure, a 48-year-old mother of four living with metastatic breast cancer, embraces each day. On the trip home from a Mayo Clinic appointment in January, where Kellie Leasure had received the news that metastatic breast cancer had again spread to her brain, "The Warrior" by Patty Smyth [...]

  8. Holistic Care Makes Breast Cancer Journey Easier to Navigate

    As she thought about her cancer treatment options, Jennifer Deaderick knew she wanted to include therapies that would take all of her needs into account. She found the type of whole-person care she was looking for at Mayo Clinic. Jennifer Deaderick has always loved a good adventure. In 2014, the occupational therapist moved from California [...]

  9. Breast Cancer Survivor Wonders, 'What If?'

    Diagnosed with breast cancer after putting off her annual mammogram for several years, Tammy Jackson shares her story to encourage others to make cancer screening exams a priority. Tammy Jackson, a 55-year-old breast cancer survivor, says she frequently asks herself, "What would've happened if I hadn't made that phone call and booked that mammogram?" Tammy, [...]

  10. Genetic Testing Sets a Course for Successful Cancer Treatment

    Michele Sabados' care team at Mayo Clinic worked together to craft an individualized care plan to treat her advanced breast cancer. It paid off. Today, Michele's cancer is gone. Michele Sabados beams when she announces she is cancer-free, convinced she will see her children graduate from college and get married ? and that she will [...]

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Expertise and rankings

Surgeons working in an operating room

Mayo Clinic specialists draw on their expertise to provide you with exactly the care you need.

Mayo Clinic doctors are widely respected for their expertise and experience in diagnosing and treating breast cancer.

Nationally recognized expertise

Outside organizations recognize Mayo Clinic breast cancer specialists through accreditations, grants and rankings:

  • Mayo Clinic Cancer Center meets strict standards for a National Cancer Institute comprehensive cancer center, recognizing scientific excellence and a multispecialty approach focused on cancer prevention, diagnosis and treatment.
  • Mayo Clinic's campus in Florida is accredited by the American College of Surgeons' National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers.
  • Mayo Clinic is one of a select group of medical centers in the United States to be recognized as a Specialized Program of Research Excellence (SPORE) for breast cancer research, funded by the National Cancer Institute. To earn a highly competitive SPORE grant, institutions must demonstrate a high degree of collaboration between first-rate scientists and clinicians and show excellence in translational research projects.
  • Mayo Clinic doctors and researchers participate in research cooperatives, such as the Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology, which gives people with cancer access to the latest clinical trials.

Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., and Mayo Clinic in Phoenix/Scottsdale, Ariz., are ranked among the Best Hospitals for cancer by U.S. News & World Report. Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Fla., is ranked highly performing for cancer by U.S. News & World Report.

Sharing expertise with the community

Mayo Clinic breast cancer specialists use their expertise in the community by participating in:

  • Breast cancer screening services for underserved groups and community clinics
  • Appointments via video technology for Alaska Native women with a high risk of breast cancer
  • Community awareness events, including Join the Journey and the National Marathon to Finish Breast Cancer

Locations, travel and lodging

Mayo Clinic has major campuses in Phoenix and Scottsdale, Arizona; Jacksonville, Florida; and Rochester, Minnesota. The Mayo Clinic Health System has dozens of locations in several states.

For more information on visiting Mayo Clinic, choose your location below:

Costs and insurance

Mayo Clinic works with hundreds of insurance companies and is an in-network provider for millions of people.

In most cases, Mayo Clinic doesn't require a physician referral. Some insurers require referrals, or may have additional requirements for certain medical care. All appointments are prioritized on the basis of medical need.

Learn more about appointments at Mayo Clinic.

Please contact your insurance company to verify medical coverage and to obtain any needed authorization prior to your visit. Often, your insurer's customer service number is printed on the back of your insurance card.

More information about billing and insurance:

Mayo Clinic in Arizona, Florida and Minnesota

Mayo Clinic Health System

Oct. 08, 2019


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