Dr. Harness shares if a woman needs chemotherapy (chemo) after receiving a mastectomy.
A very common question that I am asked is the question, “Oh gosh, if you just get rid of the breast, does mean I do not need all that other bad stuff? I don’t need chemotherapy. I don’t need radiation therapy.” The answer is, you may well need the chemotherapy because we think of breast cancer as a systemic disease. As soon as there is growth through the wall of the ducts cancer cells can shut off, in a sense like dandruff, and float and go elsewhere in the body. So, it’s cells elsewhere in the body that were most concerned about and that is why chemotherapy or anti-estrogen pill therapies are necessary to go after those cells. So regardless of what is done with the breast, saving it, removing it, the other therapies are treating the whole body and are very important.
About Dr. Harness. M.D.:
Dr. Jay Harness 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.
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