Treatment of breast cancer in Israel
Breast cancer is the leader in the incidence rate and the number of deaths among women (it occurs half as often among men). Breast cancer is a malignant neoplasm, emerging from the lactiferous ducts or lobes of mammary gland. The main cell type of the tumor is cell carcinoma, that is longstanding asymptomatic and is often found either at its later stages, either by accident (at a scheduled examination). 600,000 people die from breast cancer annually.
Only in Israel
- some of the world's best rates of curability at all stages of the disease;
- low recurrence rate;
- determining cancer risk among the direct relatives;
- surgeries with low injury rate – Israeli oncologists maximally preserve muscle tissue and the lymph nodes. It helps patient to be recovered after a mastectomy much more faster, reducing the risk of postoperative lymphostasis and simplifying plastic surgeries as well;
- all types of mammoplasty, including vascularized tissue transfer (abdominal, hip and buttock pedicle flaps, both with and without pedicle transection) are carried out in Israel.
A mammary gland is a target organ for hormones, which responds to any changes of the endocrine glands function. In addition, the organ is sensitive for supercooling, it can become inflamed due lactostasis and other functional aspects.
There are some affecting breast cancer risk factors:
- hormonal drugs administration, including hormonal contraceptives. Purchase and use of oral contraceptives without consulting a gynecologist-endocrinologist significantly increases the risk of such complications;
- menopausal and post-menopausal women. Level of hormonal fluctuations is much more important than the age;
- breast injuries;
- breast cancer in family history;
- late delivery, lack of children, early sexual intercourse;
- smoking (in this case metastases from the lungs transfer to the mammary gland).
Israeli oncological gynaecologists pay special attention to factor of BRCA2 gene mutations. Misrepresentation in these loci is inherited and causes breast cancer in 50% of cases.
Symptoms of breast cancer
The initial stages of breast cancer are almost asymptomatic, beginning with a small induration in tissue of the gland. In this particular case, self-examination is comprehensive assistance in the diagnostics. Women often find a developing tumor, but not always visit the gynecologist.
This situation is explained by:
- not all breast tumors are malignant – 9 of 10 new formations are harmless. Women get used to the fact that their (or their friends’) indurations are diagnosticated as benign ones;
- having fibrocystic breast disease (70% of today’s women after 35) it is hard to find a new nodule;
- after finding strange (untypically tight) nodule, the woman often are not psychologically ready to visit the oncologist.
The main symptoms to detect breast cancer at self-examination:
- density and skin tightness change;
- skin or nipple dimpling;
- breast asymmetry (is determined before the mirror);
- skin or nipple erosion, inflammation (is not explainable by common causes);
- symptom of ‘lemon peel’ (breast skin porosity is specific);
- nipple discharge, lactation.
Effectiveness of the treatment based on stages:
1 stage of breast cancer
96%. The primary focus is of up to 2 cm in diameter
80-90%. The focus is from 2 to 5 cm, it could be caused by regional lymph node
50-80%. The body of the tumor is greater than 5 cm, the lymph nodes are involved, a single metastasis can happen
Diagnostics of breast cancer in Israel
- Tumor markers are defined in the blood. Mapping and searching for problems of ВRCA1-2 genes are carried out (if burdened family history is);
- Mammography machine (specialized x-ray machine) is used to diagnosticate breast cancer ;
- Ultrasound, MRI, PET-CT of breast, whole body screening by means of MSCT;
- Study of sentinel lymph node. Israeli oncological doctors study the borders of the disease distribution and the degree of the intervention.
Methods of breast cancer treatment in Israel
- mammary gland quadrant or lobe removal, that is called lumpectomy. It is applicable at stages 1-2 of breast cancer. As a rule, it is supplemented by a course of radiation therapy;
- radical mastectomy with the pectoral muscles preservation. It is practiced at the stage 2B-3 of the disease. Preservation of the pectoral muscles lightens mammoplasty after surgery. The radical removal of the gland is always happening with the support of the chemotherapeutic and radiative methods of impact;
- mastectomy with removal of the pectoral muscles. The most common manipulation at the 3rd stage of cancer, when the gland, regional lymph nodes (boundaries are determined in advance) and the pectoral muscles are resected;
- palliative surgeries. Individual nodes are removed to reduce pain and restore the lymph efflux.
Chemotherapy in Israel is assigned before and after surgery. Metastasis suppression is performed with the latest treatment protocols. Targeted chemotherapy, hormone therapy, cytokine therapy (monoclonal antibodies) are applied.
Prior mastectomy Israeli doctors offer options for breast reconstruction:
- immediate on the implants. During the mastectomy silicone implant is placed under the skin, stimulating the gland. The advantage of this method is the fast compensation of the defect. The minus is the likelihood of allergic reactions, the necessity of periodic implant replacement;
- delayed on the implants. It allows to select the model with more accuracy, preliminary expanding the space for installation;
- Plastic repair with own setting.
Patient review after breast resection
Rehabilitation after mastectomy, recurrence prevention
Prevention involves regular visits to the gynecologist (mammalogists) and the oncologist in the first year after surgery with following medical examination every six months (including mandatory mammography).
It is recommended to avoid excessive exposure to sunlight, treat endocrine pathologies timely, quit smoking.
Cost of breast cancer treatment in Israel
- Prices for the services of Israeli oncological dispensaries are 20% lower than in the USA or Germany;
- Price for the diagnostics and treatment are regulated by the state;
- Patient support center Bookimed gives the opportunity to avoid paying commission to intermediaries;
- Professionalism of Israeli oncological doctors reduces the risk of recurrence.