Mastectomy Surgery: What You Need To Know

Mastectomy surgery is a significant operation that can profoundly affect a woman’s body and life. The surgery involves the removal of all or part of the breast, and it is typically performed to treat breast cancer. Although mastectomy surgery is a serious operation, it is also a very common one. In fact, it is estimated that every year in the United States alone, more than 250,000 women will undergo mastectomy surgery. This figure includes those who elect to have the surgery and those who are advised to have it as part of their treatment for breast cancer. Regardless of the reason for having the surgery, it is important for every woman to understand what mastectomy surgery entails.

All You Need to Know About Mastectomy Surgery:

What Is a Mastectomy?

A mastectomy is a surgical procedure that involves the removal of all or part of the breast. The goal of the surgery is to remove as much cancerous tissue as possible while minimizing the amount of healthy tissue that is removed.

The different types of surgeries:

There are several different types of mastectomies, and the type that is right for each woman will depend on several factors, including the size and location of the tumor, the stage of cancer, and whether or not she has undergone any other treatments.
  • The most common type of mastectomy is a total mastectomy, which involves the removal of the entire breast.
  • Other types of mastectomies include a partial mastectomy (also known as a lumpectomy), which removes only part of the breast, and a skin-sparing mastectomy, which removes all of the breast tissue but leaves most of the skin intact.
  • Sometimes, a woman may also elect to have an additional procedure called a prophylactic mastectomy. This type of surgery is performed even when no signs or symptoms of cancer are present to prevent cancer from developing in the future.

Why Would You Need Mastectomy Surgery?

There are several reasons why a woman might need to have mastectomy surgery. The most common reason is to treat breast cancer.
  • In some cases, mastectomy surgery may be recommended as a preventive measure for women who are at high risk for developing breast cancer due to genetic mutations (such as BRCA1 or BRCA2) or other factors.
  • Mastectomy surgery may also be necessary to treat other conditions affecting the breast, such as benign tumors (non-cancerous growths), severe trauma, and advanced stages of inflammatory breast cancer.


Mastectomy surgery is a major operation with potential implications for her physical appearance and emotional well-being. It is, therefore, important for every woman considering this type of surgery to understand what it entails and what she can expect in terms of recovery time, potential side effects, and long-term results.