Receiving a breast cancer diagnosis can raise many questions and concerns. However, patients in Westchester County can find comfort in knowing the best treatment is available to them, close to home.
Your Westchester-based physicians at Northwell Health in Westchester are not only some of the most qualified breast cancer surgeons in the Northeast—they’re also known for proactively implementing a number of advanced and innovative treatments to improve patient outcomes and quality of life for those battling breast cancer.
Like with most cancers, detecting breast cancer early is critical to treating patients and helping them return to normal life as soon as possible. There is a relatively simple way to ensure early detection—regular mammograms. Many women have delayed mammograms over the past year due to COVID-19. However, providers at Northwell Health are urging women not to skip this critical screening .
“Screening is the best tool we have when fighting breast cancer,” said Dr. Alice Police, the Director of Breast Surgery, Westchester, who leads the breast care program at both Phelps Hospital and Northern Westchester Hospital. “It’s important for all women to keep their screening appointments so we can catch breast cancer at its earliest and most treatable stage. We’ve put maximum safety measures in place to prevent exposure to the coronavirus for anyone who comes to the hospital for emergency or scheduled care.”
Northwell Health recommends all women over the age of 40 get an annual mammogram, and there truly is no better place to go for your screening than Phelps Hospital and Northern Westchester Hospital.
Designated Breast Imaging Centers of Excellence, the radiology facilities at Northern Westchester Hospital and Phelps Hospital are comfortable, calming, and private settings, offering state-of-the-art care and access to advanced breast care technology. Screening and diagnostic imaging procedures including 3-D mammography, ultrasound, MRI, and image-guided biopsies are available.
While early screening is critical, Northwell Health also offers the latest in breast cancer treatment. Our team of oncologists regularly adopts training standards according to the latest breast cancer research and continues to implement new, groundbreaking technologies for treatment.
Intra-Operative Radiation Therapy (IORT) is an example of such exciting innovation that delivers a single dose of radiation directly to the tumor site during surgery for early-stage breast cancers that have not spread. This allows the patient to skip the traditional four-to-six-and-a-half-week course of external beam radiation after surgery.
“The improvement in quality of life is incredible,” stated Dr. Andrew Ashikari, Breast Cancer Surgeon at both Phelps Hospital and Northern Westchester Hospital. “Patients don’t need to go back and forth to the hospital five days a week. Think about how that could benefit anyone’s hectic schedule. It’s one of the reasons that we started using it so early, and now have the most experience in the region.”
That’s far from the only new technique being used at these Northwell hospitals. Many of the surgeons at Northern Westchester and Phelps are now performing nipple-sparing mastectomies, offering superior cosmetic results over the traditional mastectomy. In addition, Northern Westchester Hospital is the first hospital in New York State to use Magtrace, a non-radioactive dye that can help locate sentinel lymph nodes, the first area cancer cells may spread.
“Women are living longer,” said Dr. Anthony Cahan, Chief of Breast Surgery at Northern Westchester Hospital. “They want to look great and feel wonderful for twenty to thirty years after treatment. We’re doing everything we can to make for the best aesthetic and clinical outcome for every patient.”
One of the ways Phelps and Northern Westchester Hospital work to improve aesthetic outcomes for their patients is with the DigniCap, a scalp-cooling treatment that can help women undergoing chemotherapy retain up to 70 percent of their hair throughout the course of their treatment.
Clinically, our doctors provide the best personalized care in the region, from nationally recognized breast cancer specialists. Patients at both facilities have access to the latest clinical trial programs, an option that could potentially boost survival rates for those who qualify.
Northwell Health in Westchester is doing all of this for you, our patients. All of the advanced treatments and upgrades to patient care are in place to ensure one thing—that women know that they don’t need to travel to New York City to receive exceptional care for breast cancer. If you live in Westchester County, the best care is available right in your own community.
“Being part of the Northwell team in Westchester is hugely beneficial for my patients,” said Dr. Ashikari. “As a patient here, you can expect high-quality care, forward thinking innovations, access to the latest clinical trials and so much more. We’re really bringing the best of everything to our patients. It’s the best breast care you can get, and it’s right here in our community.”