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February 1957

Practical Aspects of the Surgical Treatment of Breast Cancer

Author Affiliations

From the Breast Clinic, Division of Tumor Clinic, Department of Surgery, The Johns Hopkins Hospital and The Johns Hopkins University.

AMA Arch Surg. 1957;74(2):251-254. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1957.01280080105016

Breast cancer is an ancient and elusive disease which has claimed its many victims in all walks of life, at almost every age, and from time immemorial. Generation upon rising generation of physicians and surgeons alike have challenged this malign and monstrously destructive disease, resorting to every conceivable treatment considered curative at the time. However, despite the tremendous strides of our healing art, breast cancer mortality has not yet reflected to any major degree the bountiful benefits of an ever-improving surgical skill.

Although the hope of hormones, endocrine ablation surgery, and radiotherapy have all added to our armamentarium in the total treatment of this disease, the benefits of these modalities of therapy are, thus far, purely palliative. Whereas the ultimate conquest of breast cancer will certainly be the triumph of the chemotherapist, virologist, or biologist, until then all of us must, by our present everyday practice, provide the best possible

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