Breast Care

Breast Care encompasses a wide range of issues that deal with the breast including infections, inflammations, abnormal nipple symptoms, and cancer.

Breast cancer is a serious problem in America with an estimated 1 in 8 women developing breast cancer during their lifetime. Breast cancer is a disease in which malignant or cancerous cells form in the breast tissue. Breast cancer can be an inherited gene mutation in families.

The 2 main types of breast cancer are ductal and lobular, ductal being the most common. As the name suggests ductal cancer begins in the cells of the ducts. The ducts within the breasts connect the lobes and lobules. Each breast has from 15 to 20 sections called lobes containing smaller sections called lobules. The lobules end in dozens of tiny bulbs which produce milk when a woman is lactating.

The breast contains blood vessels and lymph vessels. Lymph vessels lead to lymph nodes which are organs found throughout the body and in clusters under the arm and near the breast, in the chest and above the collarbone. The lymph nodes filter lymph fluids which help to combat infection and disease.

breast-cancer-diagram

If you experience any of the following symptoms contact your primary care physician or OB/GYN, who may order tests such as a mammogram, an ultrasound or a biopsy. Symptoms include a lump or a thickening in or near your breast or underarm, a nipple recently turned inward, a change in the size or shape of the breast, inflammation, fluid leakage, or dimpling of the skin of the breast.

Once testing of the breast tissue is done and if cancer is found, your physician will analyze the results. Your physician(s) will want to know how quickly the cancer may grow and how likely the cancer is to spread through the body and may order special tests to determine this. Your physician(s) will determine what the prognosis is and what treatments might work for your particular type of cancer. There are many different courses of treatment including surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy.  These can be done individually or often times multiple courses of treatment will be administered depending on the type and stage of the cancer.  Determination will also be made as to whether the cancer is likely to recur. If you have breast cancer you have a choice in the specialists you see.

There have been many advances in the field of breast care and the treatment of breast cancer is advancing and changing continuously. As one of the more experienced surgeons in Central Oregon, Dr. VanAmburg is well educated and up-to-date in the field of breast cancer. Dr. VanAmburg attends weekly meetings at the Community Program for Breast Cancer to discuss patients and their treatment options, to get opinions from other doctors in the field, and to learn about new treatment options. Dr. VanAmburg maintains her membership in the American Society of Breast Surgeons.

Dr. VanAmburg specializes in breast care and educates the patients on the many options and treatments available to them with attention to their individual situation. She will develop a treatment plan in conjunction with the Community Program for Breast Cancer and you. You should thoroughly understand your options before proceeding with definitive treatment.

The National Cancer Institute provides a help line (1-800-4-CANCER) to obtain information on all cancers. Information is provided in both English and Spanish. Callers can obtain information on National support, and help organizations and information on financial assistance.