Oncoplastic Surgery

The goal of oncoplastic surgery is two-fold: to remove all of the cancer, and to achieve the most pleasing cosmetic result. It is the next step in the quest to ensure that breast cancer impacts the woman’s self image as little as possible.

Why oncoplastic surgery? Because in many cases, simply performing a conventional lumpectomy–that is, removing the tumor with a margin of healthy tissue–may result in a deformed breast. This is certainly true in cases where more than one-fifth of the breast mass needs to be removed.

Using oncoplastic procedures, the surgeon usaully removes more breast tissue than in a conventional lumpectomy, but in such a way that the remaining tissue is reshaped into a more pleasing breast shape. Think of it as a breast lift that returns your breast to the shape it was twenty years earlier. Often a breast lift is done on the other side to achieve the most symmetric appearance.


Oncoplastic surgery requires meticulous planning before the procedure, and skillful execution to ensure that the entire tumor has been removed. While there is still no official oncoplastic surgery specialty training, many center are offering special fellowship training in this method.

Where can you find a surgeon trained in oncoplastic surgery? Avera Cancer Institute has a team of surgeons trained in oncoplastic surgery. One of the surgeons, Dr. Julie Reiland, lectures worldwide on this topic, and on the topic of combining oncoplastic surgery with Intra Operative Radiation Therapy, using a device called a Mobetron. This achieves the best cosmetic results and the most effective cancer control, while reducing your overall treatment time.

CLICK HERE if you would like to see before-and-after photos of women who have undergone oncoplastic surgery at the Avera Cancer Institute.