Mayo Clinic's approach

Surgeons in an operating room

Experienced surgeons perform breast cancer operations at Mayo Clinic.

Mayo Clinic's highly trained breast cancer surgeons work in coordinated surgical teams using the latest advances to care for people with breast cancer and those with a high risk of developing the disease in the future.

Your Mayo Clinic care team

People with breast cancer who choose Mayo Clinic for breast cancer surgery will find highly experienced surgeons who provide expert care. Breast cancer surgeons work closely with other specialists to create a personalized treatment approach that provides you with whole-person care.

Your care team might include:

Your appointments will be coordinated so that you can carefully consider your options and meet with a variety of specialists, often in a matter of days. If you choose surgery as your initial treatment, your operation is scheduled promptly, when possible, to avoid long wait times.

Surgeon meeting with a patient

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

Expert care by world-class surgeons

Mayo Clinic breast cancer surgeons are highly trained and experienced:

  • More than 9,500 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.

Breast cancer surgeons draw on their extensive training to use the latest surgical techniques to provide expert care for:

Surgeons in an operating room

Mayo Clinic breast cancer surgeons use the latest operative techniques.

Advanced surgical techniques

Feeling whole after breast cancer.

Click here for an infographic to learn more

Mayo Clinic breast cancer surgeons are trained in the latest operations and technology used to perform lumpectomy and mastectomy, including:

  • Nipple-sparing mastectomy for cancer prevention and cancer treatment
  • Breast imaging during surgery to ensure the viability of skin used to reconstruct the breast and reduce the risk of skin complications (intraoperative breast angiography)
  • Evaluating breast tumors during surgery using techniques such as intraoperative pathology and frozen section analysis to ensure all the cancer is removed and reduce the need for additional surgery
  • Immediate breast reconstruction using operative techniques such as immediate implant reconstruction (sometimes called breast-in-a-day surgery), when appropriate, and reconstruction using excess breast skin and fatty tissue (sometimes called a Goldilocks mastectomy) or total fat grafting
  • All types of breast reconstruction using implants and your own tissue (flap surgery), including technically demanding, microsurgical procedures that spare your muscle tissue such as deep inferior epigastric perforator (DIEP) flap surgery
A surgeon discussing a case with a colleague

Mayo Clinic surgeons are working to improve outcomes for people with breast cancer.

Innovations in breast cancer surgery

Related video

Watch Mayo Clinic breast surgeons discuss breast cancer surgery on YouTube

Mayo Clinic surgeons are improving the outcomes of breast cancer surgery by creating treatments that are:

  • Reducing the time involved in treatment so you can return to daily life sooner with techniques such as immediate breast reconstruction that combines mastectomy and reconstruction in one procedure, and lumpectomy with accelerated partial breast irradiation to complete surgery and radiation therapy in less than 10 days.
  • Improving your confidence in your appearance by combining the best techniques for cancer control with approaches that maximize the natural appearance of your breasts (oncoplastic sugery), such as lumpectomy procedures that include breast lift and breast reduction
  • Controlling pain after mastectomy to reduce the need for strong pain drugs by providing non-narcotic medications before surgery, placing long-acting anesthetic in the surgical site, and using massage and other integrative medicine techniques during recovery
  • Reducing the risk of lymphedema by devising effective chemotherapy and hormone therapy regimens that can be used before surgery (neoadjuvant therapy) to reduce the need for lymph node dissection, routinely using sentinel node biopsy to test whether cancer has spread to the lymph nodes, and identifying the nodes vital to lymph drainage in the arms (axillary lymph node mapping)

Mayo Clinic breast surgeons are leaders in breast cancer and breast surgery research. This allows patients to receive the latest in treatment advances.

Mayo Clinic breast surgeons are studying ways to improve cancer control and reduce complications of surgery in clinical trials.

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. Relishing Motherhood After Battling Advanced Breast Cancer

    When she found out her breast cancer had come back, Luciana Farfalli, M.D., faced an uncertain future. But care at Mayo Clinic put the cancer in remission and allowed her to turn her attention back to the family she adores. "I'm so grateful for Andresito. He is the source of life for me," Luciana Farfalli, [...]

  2. Gaining Fresh Perspective Via Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment

    Diagnosed with breast cancer at 27, Sara Martinek persevered through treatment with the support of her family, friends and care team, and she came out on the other side with a new appreciation for what matters in life. Written by Sara Martinek Almost everyone knows someone who has been affected by cancer. Like most people, [...]

  3. Mastectomy Can't Keep Marianne Huebner Out of Competitive Weightlifting

    When she was diagnosed with breast cancer, Marianne Huebner feared her days of competitive weightlifting were over. Her care team at Mayo Clinic had other ideas. Marianne Huebner, Ph.D., was just a few months into trying the sport of weightlifting when she discovered a small lump on one of her breasts during a self-exam. "I [...]

  4. Emerging From Mastectomy With a Healthy Body Image Intact

    When she was diagnosed with breast cancer, Margaret Pelikan had two goals: to get rid of the disease and to feel normal afterward. Her team at Mayo Clinic helped her accomplish both. For eight years, Margaret Pelikan dreaded mammograms. In 2008, she had been diagnosed with a condition called lobular carcinoma in situ in her [...]

  5. Effective Treatment for Advanced Breast Cancer Calls for Customized Care

    Thirty-five-year old mother of three is amazed to find her cancer in remission thanks to her Mayo Clinic team's knowledge and individualized care. Amy Conlon arrived at Mayo Clinic's Rochester campus in August 2016 without much hope. The 35-year-old breast cancer patient and mother of three envisioned a grim future for herself. She imagined that [...]

  6. Overwhelmed, Breast Cancer Patient Finds Answer in Mayo's Centralized Care and Treatment

    Renee Hill had received opinions from other health care facilities but desperately wanted to have her medical care centralized and coordinated. "My gut was telling me Mayo was where I needed to go," she says.? When Renee Hill was diagnosed with breast cancer ? stage 3 invasive ductal carcinoma ? on her birthday in July [...]

  7. College Professor Beats Breast Cancer With Her Hometown Team

    Throughout surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy for breast cancer, Polly Browne knew she could rely on the expertise of her multidisciplinary health care team at Mayo Clinic Health System in Mankato. Polly Browne didn't have any obvious symptoms. But the North Mankato, Minnesota, resident and elementary education college professor, knew something wasn't quite right with [...]

  8. After Loss, Cancer Survivor Finds Strength in Community and Giving Back

    Editor?s Note: Carol Phillips is an IT analyst/programmer at Mayo Clinic's Rochester campus. . She shares her experience and why she travels to Florida to support the annual 26.2 with DONNA Marathon . My breast cancer journey started on April Fool?s Day?? April ?1, 2011. Only it wasn?t a joke. My routine yearly mammogram came [...]

  9. Relieving Side Effects of Breast Cancer Treatment With Microsurgery

    In May 2013, at age 47, Angenette Monroe was diagnosed with invasive cancer in her left breast. After six months of chemotherapy, she had a mastectomy as part of her treatment plan. The former gastroenterology technologist had participated in many medical procedures and was well aware of the challenges people can face after surgery. But [...]

  10. Breaking Away From Pain With the Help of 'The Scrambler'

    Participating in a clinical trial gave Karen Safranek a solution to her decade-long struggle with peripheral neuropathy? Karen Safranek didn't take a worry-free step for 10 years. Severe peripheral neuropathy ? a side effect of breast cancer treatment she received in 2002 ? left her with constant burning, tingling, numbness and pain in both her [...]

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Expertise and rankings

Breast cancer surgeon discusses options with patient

Mayo Clinic breast cancer surgeons are widely respected for their experience and knowledge in advanced surgical techniques that improve cancer control and reduce the complications of breast cancer surgery.

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 is accredited by the American College of Surgeons' Commission on Cancer and multiple campuses are accredited by the 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., Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Fla., and Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Ariz., are ranked among the Best Hospitals for cancer by U.S. News & World Report.

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.

Clinical trials

Explore Mayo Clinic studies testing new treatments, interventions and tests as a means to prevent, detect, treat or manage this disease.

Oct. 02, 2018
References
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  2. AskMayoExpert. Breast reconstruction. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2017.
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  6. Warner KJ. Allscripts EPSi. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. April 21, 2017.
  7. McDermott AM, et al. Surgeon and breast unit volume-outcome relationships in breast cancer surgery and treatment. Annals of Surgery. 2013;258:808.
  8. Choi M, et al. Breast in a day: Examining single-stage immediate, permanent implant reconstruction in nipple-sparing mastectomy. Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. 2016;138:184e.
  9. Richardson G, et al. The Goldilocks mastectomy. International Journal of Surgery. 2012;10:522.
  10. Hieken TJ, et al. A novel treatment schedule for rapid completion of surgery and radiation in early-stage breast cancer. Annals of Surgical Oncology. 2016;23:3297.
  11. Anderson BO, et al. Oncoplastic techniques in breast conserving therapy. https://www.uptodate.com/contents/search. Accessed July 6, 2017.
  12. Fahy AS, et al. Paravertebral blocks in patients undergoing mastectomy with or without immediate reconstruction provides improved pain control and decreased postoperative nausea and vomiting. Annals of Surgical Oncology. 2014;21:3284.
  13. Abdelsattar JM, et al. Comparative study of liposomal bupivacaine versus paravertebral block for pain control following mastectomy with immediate tissue expander reconstruction. Annals of Surgical Oncology. 2016;23:465.
  14. Drackley NL, et al. Effect of massage therapy for postsurgical mastectomy recipients. Clinical Journal of Oncology Nursing. 2012;16:121.
  15. Parks RM, et al. Axillary reverse mapping in N0 patients requiring sentinel lymph node biopsy — A systematic review of the literature and necessity of a randomized study. The Breast. 2017;33:57.
  16. Jakub J, et al. Oncologic safety of prophylactic nipple-sparing mastectomy in a population with BRCA mutations: A multi-institutional study. JAMA Surgery. In press. Accessed Sept. 18, 2017.
  17. Breast SPOREs. National Cancer Institute. https://trp.cancer.gov/spores/breast.htm. Accessed July 3, 2017.
  18. National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers. American College of Surgeons. https://www.facs.org/quality-programs/napbc. Accessed Aug. 2, 2017.
  19. Effects of anesthesia. American Society of Anesthesiologists. https://www.asahq.org/whensecondscount/patients home/preparing for surgery/effects of anesthesia. Accessed Aug. 1, 2017.
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  22. Searching for cancer centers. American College of Surgeons. https://www.facs.org/search/cancer-programs. Accessed Aug. 2, 2017.