Cancer and Blood Care

Breast Cancer Treatments

Quality care in a soothing environment – that’s what you can expect if you or your loved ones are receiving screening, diagnosis or breast cancer treatment through the TriHealth Cancer & Blood Institute. Our dedicated experts use state-of-the-art technology and evidence-based practices to provide the best possible outcomes.

If you have been diagnosed with breast cancer, you and your doctor will come up with a treatment plan. Normally, a treatment plan comes within a few weeks of the diagnosis.

Treatment recommendations take many aspects into consideration, including:

  • The tumor’s size and location
  • Pathology findings
  • The cancer’s stage

Treatments can take a local or systemic approach, or a combination of both. Local treatments –surgery and radiation – aim to wipe out, remove or control the cancer cells in a certain area.

Systemic approaches, on the other hand, attack cancer cells throughout the body. Chemotherapy and hormone therapy are both systemic treatments. Your doctor and treatment team will review with you their recommendations for an approach that is geared to your specific diagnosis.

Breast Cancer Treatments

  • Lumpectomy: Surgical removal of a breast lump (which may be cancerous) and surrounding healthy tissue. Early breast cancers may be excised by lumpectomy rather than mastectomy.
  • Mastectomy: Surgical removal of the whole breast. Removing the chest wall muscle and nearby lymph nodes is a radical mastectomy.
  • Axillary lymph node dissection: Taking out the lymph nodes under the arm to prevent the spread of cancer cells to other sites in the body.
  • Chemotherapy: Medication given by pill or IV to destroy cancer cells. Sometimes chemotherapy is used to shrink the size of a tumor or to limit the chances of spread.
  • Radiation therapy: The use of focused radiation waves from a machine directed to the breast, chest wall and armpit to destroy any cancer cells still present after surgery. Another form of radiation uses radioactive materials placed inside the body to destroy cancer cells.
  • Breast reconstruction: When large amounts of breast tissue are surgically removed, the breast can be rebuilt with either an implant or tissue from your own body.

Breast Care Service Locations

From preventive mammography services to certified nurse navigators who guide you through your treatment, recovery and survivorship, we offer comprehensive breast care services at convenient locations throughout the city.

Nurse Navigators

“Navigators are a patient’s first line of contact following a diagnosis,” says Tina German, R.N., a certified breast patient navigator. “My job is to guide patients on their journey to survivorship.”

Chemotherapy

In some instances, chemotherapy is ordered prior to your surgery. Importantly, TriHealth Cancer & Blood Institute provides a true multidisciplinary treatment clinic. This means that all specialties are in the same room as we mutually recommend care decisions for you. This includes surgery, nutrition, genetics, chemotherapy and radiation.

Not all patients receive chemotherapy.

Radiation

Many patients receive radiation within about four to six weeks after surgery. There are two types of radiation; intraoperative that occurs during surgery and standard radiation that occurs for about six days per week at one of our convenient locations (Kenwood, Good Samaritan Hospital or our Medi-Center at the Bethesda North Hospital Campus).

When you are hormone positive

Some individuals are hormone positive. Our lead geneticists work with you and will recommend an appropriate endocrine therapy. This process suppresses estrogen and often becomes part of your life for five years. It also decreases your chances of a return of cancer.

Hormone therapy

Tests can determine if the cancer is sensitive to estrogen or progesterone. If the test is positive, it means that the cancer cells grow when one or both of these hormones are present. You may be given a hormone blocker (a pill) that prevents your body's natural hormones from reaching the cancer.

Follow-Up with Your Surgeon

Once you are through treatment and surgery, your surgeon follows up. This provides further options regarding surgery, reconstruction and your prognosis.

Many women choose to have reconstructive cosmetic surgery after breast cancer treatments. We offer:

  • Anaplastic surgery: Breast-conserving surgery in combination with plastic surgery techniques, such as reduction mammoplasty, which optimizes aesthetic outcomes.
  • Breast reconstruction: This surgery reconstructs a breast that's been removed with silicone or saline implants or by using muscle, fat and skin from other parts of the body. Though you won’t get a breast with all the natural feelings, it can give you a result that looks like a breast.
  • Breast form-fitting services: Breast forms come in a variety of shapes and sizes and fit into specially designed lingerie. They help your body maintain its balance and help you avoid upper back and neck pain, not to mention help you feel more self-confident.

Precision Oncology

Delivering personalized treatment based on your unique cancer genomics and biomarkers.

If you have a cancer diagnosis, you are seeking world-class care close to home. Because every cancer is unique, our innovative medical oncologists utilize state-of-the-art testing to select the right treatment plan for you. Learn more.