The majority of our patients have benign breast disease. Breast imaging like mammogram and ultrasound are frequently used as an adjunct in the diagnosis although occasionally a biopsy is also needed to confirm the diagnosis. Biopsy is often performed percutaneously and rarely is open surgery needed. We also offer minimally invasive procedures like mammotomy (hyperlink to mammotomy) which removes small lesions in the breast with minimal scars.
Prompt diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer remains the most important goal of the service. It has been shown that breast cancer often starts from a pre-invasive stage which has an excellent prognosis if treated adequately. Mammographic screening remains the only scientifically proven method of reducing breast cancer mortality by detecting cancers at an earlier stage. We are one of three centres designated as an assessment centre as part of the BreastScreen Singapore program. We have been involved in BreastScreen Singapore since 2002.
Our philosophy is that of a multidisciplinary approach towards the treatment of breast cancer. This ensures that patients benefit from the expertise of all the various specialities. The team includes Breast Surgeons, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons, Medical Oncologists, Radiation Oncologists, Radiologists, Pathologists, Breast Nurse Clinicans and Physiotherapists.
Surgery remains the mainstay of treatment of breast cancer. Breast cancer surgery has evolved from radical surgery of the past to conservative surgery that we now offer in our service. Suitable patients are offered breast conservative surgery where only the tumour is removed. Oncoplastic surgical techniques are employed to shape the breast to minimise breast asymmetry. A lesser procedure called sentinel lymph node biopsy has also been introduced where most of the underarm lymph glands are spared from removal if it is not necessary. Patients requiring radical surgery will be offered immediate breast reconstruction. Finally we have the expertise to perform skin cover for large tumours and even chest wall reconstruction should this be required.