It is the branch of medicine that studies the anatomical, physiological and pathological aspects of the breast. According to the ROCHE medical dictionary, it is the science that studies the entire mammary gland.
The senologist is the doctor who, due to his preparation, has conducted a formal training in breast problems with an emphasis on updated breast cancer surgery and breast problems in general. They are dedicated exclusively to managing breast problems and offering timely treatment to patients from different fields and specialties.
"Breast cancer is the most common in women. One in ten women will suffer from this disease some time in their life"
Oncoplastic Breast Surgery.
By using plastic surgery patterns in the oncological context to perform tumor resection, trying to preserve the aesthetic part.
a. Tumouctomy (Tumor Resection) b. Quadrantectomy (Resection of a quadrant of the breast) c. Segmentectomy (Resection of a Segment of the breast) d. ROLL, SNOLL, SEED
Removing the need to perform unnecessary axillary dissections in cases that qualify.
In cases that qualify for the procedure, radiotherapy treatment during tumor resection surgery; removing the need to perform the usual radiotherapy treatment after surgery.
a. Radicals. b. Skin preservatives. c. Conservative skin and nipple.
Radical Dissection of Armpit.
Reconstruction at the same time of the tumor surgery and / or after treatment with chemotherapy and / or radiotherapy (working together with a plastic surgeon).
Surgery and attention to benign breast problems in general.
Dr. Alvaro Peña
- Senology expert, with extensive experience in breast problem surgery with emphasis on updated management of breast cancer surgery and oncoplastic surgery.
- Researcher in the Department of Immunology / Breast Cancer of the Mayo Clinic, in Rochester, Minnesota; considered by the U.S. News & World Report as the best hospital in the United States.
- Together with other doctors specialized in breast cancer related issues, it forms a multidisciplinary team to provide a complete service.
"This 2020 has been tough in many ways for everyone around the world, and for some people it has been even harder. One of the biggest challenges in my life started this year in January, with an unexpected diagnosis of a malignant tumor on my left breast. No words can describe the fear and distress that you experiment feeling your life could be in danger. In the midst of all those feelings, the search for a doctor starts, looking for someone that could help you and guide you through every step, who speaks clearly but is also empathetic enough to understand the moment you are living, someone who pays careful attention to your questions even the ones you think are "silly", a doctor that is able to calm your mind and heart. That’s how life showed me the way to the best doctor in the world: Dr Alvaro Peña. I’ll never forget that Friday, January 17th, 2020, when he kindly called me after I emailed him. At first, he calmed me down and then he answered all of my questions. From then on, he started his work with me. He hasn’t left me alone in this journey. The surgery to remove the tumor was very successful. His staff is very warm and caring. He is a very patient, charismatic, noble, and empathetic doctor, that along with all his knowledge and his amazing hands are just a few of his qualities. I couldn’t be in better hands; I thank life that led me to him. Thank you Doctor Peña for everything you’ve done and keep doing for me!"
"I'm a former CCSS nurse and NGO activist. I've been working for 30 years with women on social risk, cancer and oncology survivors. This affliction have reached my family as well. It's been a pleasant experience to work with Dr. Alvaro Peña, who stands out for his availability, being respectfull, commitment, empathy, team work skills, and his excellent professional performance delivering a high quality care. Thank U very much Dr. Peña."
"As a breast cancer patient from the US, I found incredible compassion, thoroughness and professionalism from Dr. Alvaro Peña. He cares about his patients (contacted me immediately on a weekend), and helped me navigate the process, from accurate diagnosis, treatment options, surgery and post care – always checking on my wellbeing. Hospital Metropolitano Lindora Cancer Center is incredible!"
¨ As in any disease of this type, the desire is to detect it in time, aiming towards making the treatment more timely and effective. Therefore, I am super grateful to God for putting me at Dr. Peña in my way, because thanks to his expertise and his extensive knowledge of the subject, allowed in my case cancer was detected very timely.¨
"Dr. Peña is an excellent doctor and surgeon. He is very good at explaining what to expect and how he will perform any procedure. I have no hesitation in recommending him to anyone needing breast surgery”
¨ I was diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer. I can say that the attention provided by Dr. Peña was excellent at all times. I felt the concern on his part and his accompaniment in the whole health process. Nowadays I already went through the chemotherapy process, then the surgery and to end the radiotherapy. Thank God I am cancer-free, I invite you to perform a breast self-examination every month for early detection.¨
¨From my first appointment with Dr. Peña I felt accompanied and confident which made me see my problem in a more positive way and even more after seeing the result after surgery"
1Is self-examination important and saves lives with breast cancer patients?
NO. The ONLY detection method that saves lives, today, in breast cancer patients with scientific evidence, is a time imaging study; that is, mammography or mammography and breast ultrasound. The only advantage of the breast self-examination is for the woman to meet to see a suitable specialist when something is different. Most of the time, when an injury is touched, it will no longer be in very early stages.
2When should I start getting regular mammograms?
The most advisable, in the international scientific community, is to have the first mammographic study around 40 years. From this age, annual checks are advised; If you are a patient with risk factors, mammography can be performed at younger ages. The radiation dose from a mammogram or a breast ultrasound is very low compared to the great benefit of having it done on time.
3How often should mammograms be performed? Is it dangerous to do many?
The ideal periodicity of the mammographic study is an annual control. In some cases that are the minority, controls should be made in shorter periods, depending on each situation and that there must be an evolutionary control of any change in the physical examination of the patient or for any change in another imaging study. No scientific study has shown that periodic mammography creates damage in the short or long term, saving the discomfort inherent in the compression necessary for a correct study.
4Is mammography 100% reliable?
If the mammographic study is negative due to malignancy, the probability of inadvertent cancer is very rare; but, of every 100 cancers, it is possible that up to 10 can be undetectable by mammography. Mainly, in those patients with very dense breasts, which, in fact, is already considered a risk factor for this type of cancer.
5When should I have a mammogram so it doesn't bother me so much? Is it normal to be annoying?
The best time to compress the chest, is just after the start of the menstrual period, and not take more than 10 days, after that time. The reason is that, on that occasion, the chest is less painful, because it is at hormonal rest. Each woman and each breast have their own personality; therefore, its own sensitivity, which is very varied. In some cases, it is advisable to do some pre-study treatment to minimize discomfort. To be correctly interpreted, it is necessary that during the mammogram the chest is compressed properly. This usually creates a nuisance, more or less, bearable in most people, although logically there are extreme cases.
6My breast hurts a lot when the menstrual period approaches. Is it bad or is it normal?
There are some types of breast structure that favor when the hormonal proportions of the second phase of the cycle cause the breast cells to "swell" and the pain occurs. This is not bad or indicates a greater risk of malignant pathology, but it is an unpleasant situation, which, in most cases, can be treated successfully, without the need to resort to complicated or dangerous treatments.
7Should I self-explore my chest? When?
It is advisable for the woman to know her chest. That only means getting used to knowing its characteristics. As the chest changes its volume during the cycle, it is advisable to explore it shortly after the start of menstruation, which is the time when the chest is at hormonal rest. This does not mean that the woman becomes obsessed with exploring it, nor that it becomes something distressing. In that case, it is best that you do bi or three-year clinical reviews with your doctor, depending on the case. And don't forget that what saves lives is a mammogram or breast ultrasound on time!