Prophylactic mastectomy / Preventive mastectomy

Prophylactic mastectomy is the preventive removal of the still healthy, not yet diseased mammary gland to prevent a possible, or probable, disease. This usually involves the complete removal of the mammary gland, usually while preserving the nipple and areola (nipplesparing mastectomy). The resulting missing breast volume is reconstructed using a silicone prosthesis or autologous tissue. What sounds very simple here has very considerable consequences for the woman concerned: By removing the gland, the ability to breastfeed and especially the sensitivity of the breast is lost; the breast as an erogenous organ is lost. With the insertion of a silicone prosthesis, the probability is very high that corrections and prosthesis changes will be necessary in the course of life. All these points, however, have to be set against the benefit of a high probability of never getting breast cancer.