(Partial Mastectomy; Segmentectomy; Tylectomy)
by Cynthia M. Johnson, MA
Lumpectomy is the removal of cancer. Healthy breast and lymph nodes may also be removed.
Reasons for Procedure
This is done to treat breast cancer.
Problems are rare, but all procedures have some risk. Your doctor will review problems that may happen, such as:
Some factors that may raise the risk of problems are:
What to Expect
Prior to Procedure
Your doctor will likely do:
Talk to your doctor about your medicines. You may be asked to stop taking some medicines up to one week before surgery.
Do not eat or drink for 8-12 hours before surgery.
You will have general anesthesia. You will be asleep.
Description of Procedure
A small cut will be made in the breast. The tumor will be cut out, along with some of the tissue around it. A cut near the armpit may be made to remove lymph nodes. Plastic tubes for drainage may be put in place. Incisions will be closed with stitches.
Immediately After Procedure
Right after the procedure, you will be in a recovery room where your blood pressure, pulse, and breathing will be watched. You may be given medicine to:
Removed tissue will be studied. The findings may show if more surgery is needed. If you had cancer and it has spread, chemotherapy and radiation therapy may be needed.
How Long Will It Take?
About 1-3 hours
Will It Hurt?
Anesthesia will prevent pain during surgery. Pain and discomfort after surgery can be managed with medicines.
When you get home:
Call Your Doctor
Call your doctor if any of these occur:
If you think you have an emergency, call for medical help right away.
Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation
Canadian Cancer Society
Breast cancer in women. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed... . Updated October 20, 2017. Accessed January 5, 2018.
Exercises after breast surgery. American Cancer Society website. Available at: https://www.cancer.org/cancer/breast-cancer/treatment/surgery-for-breast-cancer/exercises-after-breast-cancer-surgery.html. Updated September 13,2017. Accessed January 5, 2018.
Lumpectomy. Encyclopedia of Surgery website. Available at:
...(Click grey area to select URL)
Accessed January 5, 2018.
Lumpectomy: What to expect. Breast Cancer website. Available at:
...(Click grey area to select URL)
Updated March 4, 2015. Accessed January 5, 2018.
Torres Lacomba M, Yuste Sánchez MJ, Zapico Goñi A, et al. Effectiveness of early physiotherapy to prevent lymphoedema after surgery for breast cancer: randomised, single blinded, clinical trial. BMJ. 2010;340:b5396.
Last reviewed November 2018 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Mohei Abouzied, MD, FACP
Last Updated: 5/22/2018
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