Our multidisciplinary treatment center provides women with the most complete, accurate and prompt diagnosis and treatment possible. The service offers patients state-of-the-art diagnostic technology and advanced treatment options in one centralized location.
The Breast Care Center is available to treat women with a variety of symptoms and conditions, including cysts and lumps, breast pain, nipple discharge and cancer. A woman may also use the Breast Care Center if she has been referred to a breast surgeon, or simply wants a second opinion. Additionally, the Breast Care Center features the only fully digital mammography program in the region. Patients are scheduled for a physician appointment at the Breast Care Center promptly if there is a new problem, such as an abnormal mammogram.
Services at the Breast Care Center are designed to assist a woman from the time of her initial symptoms or abnormal mammogram throughout the entire treatment process. These services include imaging, diagnosis, surgical and non-surgical treatments, radiation and medical oncology, and breast reconstruction.
The Breast Care Center is staffed by health professionals dedicated to the newest techniques and treatments for diagnosis and recovery. Lisa Planeta, MD, FACS is the surgeon at the Breast Care Center. In addition, Ivette Perez, M.A. has expanded her role in the Breast Care Center as Patient Navigator. She has specialized training to assist our patients across the spectrum of needs in cancer care securing appointments with subspecialists, assistance with financial concerns, insurance authorizations, counseling as needed and post procedural garments and support.
Testing for Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer Syndrome
A mutation in the breast cancer genes (BRCA 1 or 2) is known to significantly increase a womans lifetime risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer. However, once a woman is found to have a mutation, there are medical management options and surgical options available which are known to reduce the risk of developing these cancers. Therefore, it is important that women at risk who carry a mutation in the breast cancer genes (BRCA 1 or 2) are identified and tested. At the Breast Care Center your risk will be evaluated and if elevated a simple blood test will be drawn.
Breast MRI is a scan used for detecting and staging breast cancer and other breast abnormalities. It is not a replacement for mammography or ultrasound imaging but rather is a supplemental tool. The average breast MRI takes 30 minutes and requires an intravenous for a contrast injection. A report will be sent to your referring physician.
MRI Guided Breast Biopsy
Once your Breast MRI exam is reviewed, the radiologist will decide if you are a candidate for a biopsy and will discuss the case with our doctor. Our doctor will discuss the MRI results with you and arrange a biopsy if needed.
New Anesthesia Option
Mercy Medical Center is the first hospital in Western Massachusetts to offer paravertebral block as possible alternative to general anesthesia. Formerly, mastectomy has been done under general anesthesia, usually requiring an overnight hospital stay. Selected patients may opt for paravertebral block, a newer type of regional anesthesia, and often discharged to home from the recovery room. This technique leads to less post operative pain, less need for narcotics, and is associated with a high degree of patient satisfaction. This technique is not for everyone anesthetic options are discussed with patients preoperatively.
Every patient with the new diagnosis of breast cancer seen at our center has a full multidisciplinary review. This review involves radiation oncologists, diagnostic radiologists, medical oncologists, pathologists, and surgeons, assuring reference to nationally recognized standards. Any new recommendations from that group are communicated directly with the patient.
For more information or to schedule an appointment, call the Breast Care Center at Mercy Medical Center at 413-452-6600.