modified radical mastectomy

Modified Radical Mastectomy Defined

A modified radical mastectomy (sometimes called a total mastectomy with axillary node dissection) is an operation that removes the breast (tissue, ducts, lobules and fatty tissue), a portion of the skin with the nipple, the lining of the chest wall muscles and lymph nodes under the arm. The lymph node surgery may consist of a sentinel node biopsy at the time of the mastectomy.

The operation requires general anesthesia and takes approximately two hours. The surgery will take longer if combined with reconstruction. Although this surgery can be done in an outpatient center, generally patients stay in the hospital for one to two days.

Updated June 6, 2016