A 42-year-old member asked:
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when does chemo being after mastectomy? i am having a double mastectomy and i am wondering how long it usually take before chemo radiation begins?

2 doctor answers
Dr. Liawaty Ho
22 years experience Hematology and Oncology
Adjuvant chemo: First of all, we need to make sure that the wound from mastectomy are healing well before we start chemotherapy. So it is roughly as early as 4 weeks chemo can be started - to not later than 3 months post surgery. Off course, you do not want to delay it too much. Chemo usually will be started first then once is completed will be followed by radiation therapy.Discuss further with your oncology team.
Answered on Dec 10, 2013
Dr. Steve Martinez
27 years experience Breast Surgery
Short break: Chemotherapy is generally given before radiation. This starts 4-6 weeks after surgery. In most cases, radiation is not required after mastectomy. Exceptions are for patients with large tumors (>5cm), skin or muscle involvement with tumor, or > 3 lymph nodes involved with cancer; patients with any of these will benefit from post-mastectomy radiation. This is given over 6 weeks.
Answered on Oct 23, 2018

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