The Center for Breast Health prides itself in offering the latest in comprehensive treatment of breast cancer, benign breast disease and high risk gene mutations. Our center has grown to include the specialty of oncoplastics, a division of breast surgery focused on cosmetic outcomes. Led by Director Katherine Kopkash, MD, our team of fellowship-trained and certified breast surgeons collaborates with the NorthShore Kellogg Cancer Center team, plastic surgeons, nurse practitioners and radiologists to create a personalized treatment plan to address each patient’s condition.
Whether an individual is an existing or new NorthShore patient, we make time to sit down and discuss their options. Each patient's individualized care plan is determined by looking at imaging, pathology results, family history, current breast health and the patient’s personal goals for their breasts post-procedure. Our team utilizes pictures as a helpful guide for patients to determine their desired outcomes and to understand the treatment and recovery process.
Whether surgery is to remove a cancerous tumor or to address concerns in high-risk patients (prophylactic surgery), the oncoplastics team is specially-trained to perform minimally invasive procedures using state-of-the-art technology that allow for more accurate localization of tumors and improved cosmetic outcomes and natural-looking results. Our hidden scar approach—making incisions in the areola, armpit and under the breast, using radioactive seeds to help radiologists better locate and localize tumors, as well as using lighted retractors (a tool that helps surgeons navigate soft tissue with better visualization)—identifies the best way to access tumors and abnormalities to achieve as little scarring as possible. Our specialists also emphasize techniques, such as nipple-sparing mastectomies and other breast symmetry procedures, to ensure patients can have the results they desire surgically and cosmetically.
During surgery, our oncoplastics team uses intra-op real-time specimen imaging to ensure the abnormality was removed as accurately and completely as possible to decrease the possibility of needing a second surgery. Our team makes sure to provide the best care for each patient by addressing pain and properly monitoring healing, as well as follow-up every 6 months to 1 year to observe their results.
As one of the first healthcare systems to have a dedicated program to the specialty of oncoplastics, NorthShore’s team leads the way in surgical skill, education and training for surgeons. The team is also beginning research through a national clinical trial analyzing new technology to improve patient outcomes and address their cosmetic needs.
For More Information
Oncoplastic breast surgery as part of the treatment process for benign and malignant breast abnormalities is usually covered by insurance. Please contact your insurance provider to discuss your options. For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call 847.570.1700.