NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms

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The NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms features 7,811 terms related to cancer and medicine.

Browse the dictionary by selecting a letter of the alphabet or by entering a cancer-related word or phrase in the search box.

simple mastectomy
(SIM-pul ma-STEK-toh-mee)
Surgery to remove the whole breast. Some of the lymph nodes under the arm may also be removed. Also called total mastectomy.

EnlargeTotal (simple) mastectomy; drawing shows removal of the breast and lymph nodes.

Total (simple) mastectomy. The dotted line shows where the entire breast is removed. Some lymph nodes under the arm may also be removed.