Expert Treatment for Diseases of the Breast
Founded in 1978, the Breast Health Center at Tufts Medical Center provides comprehensive care for all aspects of breast health.
We were one of the first U.S. breast programs to bring together a team of care providers under one roof, offering patients the expertise of multiple specialists from across Tufts MC in one location. This means that whether you're scheduling a breast cancer screening, seeking advice on cancer prevention or living with a cancer diagnosis, you always get the high-quality, individualized care you deserve.
Our team provides the full spectrum of diagnostic, therapeutic and educational services for all benign and malignant breast conditions, including:
- Invasive breast cancer
- Ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS)
- Inflammatory breast cancer
- Phyllodes tumors
- Locally advanced and metastatic breast cancer
- Recurrent cancer of the breast, chest wall or other localized areas
- Elevated breast cancer risk and risk reduction
- Benign disorders of the breast
- Hereditary breast cancer risk
The Latest in Screening & Treatment for Breast Cancer
The Breast Health Center offers a full range of services to help improve your chances of preventing cancer or detecting it in the earliest stages.
We offer the latest in digital mammography screenings. Also, if you have a family history of breast cancer, you may opt for genetic counseling and possibly genetic testing in addition to your regular breast cancer screenings. Our genetic testing team includes an experienced geneticist and a genetic counselor to help you understand your cancer risk and treatment options.
If you're diagnosed with breast cancer, our program offers state-of-the-art treatments in a caring, supportive environment. In addition, our patients have access to the latest clinical trials.
One Team, One Mission: Caring for You
Care in the Cancer Center is provided by experts from across Tufts MC, collaborating to deliver the most sophisticated, personalized therapies. Depending on your cancer type and other needs, your care team may include specialists from disciplines such as:
- Surgical oncology
- Medical oncology
- Radiation oncology
- Social work
- Reconstructive surgery
- Complementary therapy
The Cancer Center leadership team works together to organize and coordinate our care teams:
- Cancer Center Clinical Director John Erban, MD, who specializes in medical oncology, is an internationally known expert in breast cancer diagnosis and treatment.
- Breast Health Center Director Roger Graham, MD, our lead surgical oncologist, is also Chief of General Surgery and Surgical Oncology.
Dr. Erban, Dr. Graham and Dr. Morr have all received Top Doctor designation from U.S. News & World Report.
How Will I Make Decisions About My Treatment?
A breast cancer diagnosis can seem overwhelming at first. In addition to facing decisions about treatments, you're probably wondering how your cancer will affect your life and your loved ones. That's why we pair each of our patients with an experienced nurse navigator to help you:
- Coordinate your care.
- Understand your diagnosis, prognosis and treatment options.
- Connect you with information and support services.
- Offer advice for dealing with symptoms and potential lifestyle changes associated with your condition.
We can also connect you and your family with a social worker, who can talk to you about financial matters and offer access to support services at Tufts MC and in your community.
What Are My Treatment Options?
Our oncologists, radiologists, surgeons and pathologists meet weekly to discuss each patient's individualized care.
Your care team will work in close collaboration with you and your nurse navigator to develop a plan based on your health history, lifestyle and cancer type. Breast cancer care plans usually include surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, hormonal therapy or a combination of therapies. You may also be a candidate for more-personalized, targeted treatments that are under development or in clinical trial.
Surgery is often the first step in treating breast cancer. Whenever possible, our surgeons use minimally invasive surgical techniques, such as sentinel node biopsy (testing a small number of lymph nodes to determine if your cancer has spread), to reduce your risk, discomfort and recovery time. We also specialize in oncoplastic breast surgery - a field that combines the best of cancer treatments and reconstructive techniques.
Our physicians employ the latest image-guided techniques for breast conservation and regional radiation along with other techniques such as brachytherapy and hyperthermia. Meanwhile, our radiologists oversee all aspects of breast-conserving radiation therapy or post-mastectomy treatment.
Medical Therapy (Chemotherapy, Hormone Therapy & Precision Targeted Therapy)
Your care team may recommend chemotherapy, hormone therapy or targeted biologic therapies before or as a follow-up to surgery. Our experts use a wide range of anti-cancer medications, including advanced drugs that target specific breast cancer cells.
We offer patients consultations with our reconstructive surgeons immediately after diagnosis. As a result, we can fully integrate this aspect of your treatment into your overall care plan, saving you time and unnecessary worry. A variety of modern reconstructive techniques is available either at the time of your surgery or after you've completed your cancer treatments.
In addition to standard treatments, the Breast Health Center offers patients access to promising new therapies through participation in clinical trials at Tufts MC. Some of our trials are unique to Boston or available at only a few centers in the United States.