Dr. Harness discusses the treatment options for invasive breast cancer.
Dr. Harness, M.D.:
Invasive breast cancer needs to, we need to think of the treatments of invasive breast cancer as two things: local control within the breast as well as treating the whole body. The local control in the breast can be done by, a layman’s term is a lumpectomy. Almost always that’s followed by radiation therapy to the breast, either the entire breast or part of the breast.
And then we always, no matter what kind of treatment, we are always sampling the lymph nodes to see if they are involved. If the lymph nodes are involved, they are removed.
And then with probably the majority of breast cancers that are invasive, we’re treating the whole body. And the two categories of treatment are the dreaded category for most women of chemotherapy, which is I think is better and kinder and gentler now. And then the other category is anti-hormone therapy.
And generally, the anti-hormone therapy comes at the end of all the treatments we do, and then also included with the treatment of invasive breast cancers is radiation, radiation therapy, as we talked about.
So the important thing to think about is that the treatment of invasive breast cancer typically involves more than just surgery. I think that’s a really important point here.
About Dr. Harness, M.D.:
Dr. Jay Harness, M.D., is the Director at St. Joseph Hospital Comprehensive Breast Center. Practicing medicine for 35 years, Dr. Harness specializes in general surgery and medical oncology. Graduating medical school from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, he conducting his internship and residency at the University of Michigan Medical Center. Recognized nationally and internationally for his work in breast and endocrine surgery, Dr. Harness is the immediate past-President of The American Society of Breast Surgeons and is President-elect of Breast Surgery International. Dr. Harness can assist patients in English, Spanish, and Vietnamese.