If radiation therapy is necessary, it typically starts within a few weeks of a lumpectomy procedure.
In rare cases, depending on the size of the lump removed, you may choose to have breast reconstruction surgery. This is done after any radiation therapy is complete. However, most women don’t need reconstruction after this type of surgery. That is one of the advantages of lumpectomy.
If you have a large tumor and are very concerned about having symmetrical breasts, talk to your doctor about options before surgery. Your surgeon may recommend a mastectomy. A mastectomy may also be recommended if you’re concerned about the cancer returning or if you don’t want radiation. You might need additional surgeries if the whole tumor wasn’t fully removed during the initial surgery.