A simple mastectomy is the removal of as much breast tissue as possible, including the skin and nipple area.

Examples of when a mastectomy may be recommended include:

  • when the cancer takes up a large area of the breast
  • when there’s more than one area of cancer in the breast

Image: depicting position of breast cancer and scar after a mastectomy

If a surgeon recommends a mastectomy they will explain why. It may be possible to have a mastectomy, even if breast-conserving surgery is an option.