A lumpectomy (also known as wide local excision) involves removal of a breast lump. This may be recommended for small lumps that will not cause significant distortion to the breast. If the lump is not easily felt, we may ask our x-ray doctor (radiologist) to help us find the area to remove by either placing a skin mark on the overlying skin or placing a wire or seed or device into the lump so this can identified at the time of surgery.
With a lumpectomy we will be looking for a healthy margin of tissue around the breast lesion. The size of this margin will vary and it would be sensible to have a discussion with us prior to surgery. If the margin of tissue is less than what we would recommend, we may recommend further surgery (to re-excise the margin). In certain cases, this may result in a mastectomy.