Women Increasingly Having Outpatient Mastectomies, New Federal Data Show

(By – Julie Appleby, Kaiser Health News)

More women with breast cancer — and an increasing number without — are choosing to have mastectomies over more breast-sparing procedures. And nearly half don’t spend a single night in the hospital but go home the same day, new government data show.

The data, released Monday, add to other studies that show treatment for breast cancer is shifting after years in which women, particularly those with early-stage breast cancer, were encouraged to have less invasive surgeries — and advocates opposed outpatient or “drive-by” mastectomies.

The findings concerned some advocates, who say for many women, the less invasive options are just as effective. The advocates also fear financial issues might be leading some patients to be sent home too soon. Read more…

 

Kaiser Health News is a nonprofit national health policy news service that is part of the nonpartisan Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.

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