HCN News & Notes

Baystate Health Recognized as Hidden Scar Center for Excellence

WESTFIELD — Baystate Health announced it has been recognized as a Hidden Scar Center for Excellence for Hidden Scar breast-cancer surgery, making it one of the region’s only breast-care programs to achieve this designation. Baystate Health is expanding options for women in Western Mass. with a procedure that effectively treats the cancer while optimizing cosmetic results.

Each year, approximately 253,000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer that requires surgery. Statistics show that one out of eight women will be impacted, with many unaware of all the surgical options available, including less invasive approaches that can help restore their self-image and allow them to begin the emotional healing process. Five-year survival rates for breast cancer are high, but the surgery scars left behind are more than a physical reminder. They impact confidence, intimacy, and mental well-being for many women. But living with noticeable scars after surgery is no longer necessary.

“Hidden Scar breast-cancer surgery allows our surgeons to remove the cancerous tissue through a single incision made in a hidden area, preserving the natural shape of the breast while reducing visible scarring. Patients who undergo this approach experience optimal clinical and cosmetic outcomes and are at no higher risk of recurrence than patients who undergo any other surgical technique,” said Dr. Holly Mason, section chief for Breast Surgery at Baystate Health. “A breast-cancer diagnosis is difficult enough. Baystate Health is committed to enabling our surgeons to perform complex, in-demand surgeries with greater confidence and give more women access to transformative options.”

Performing breast-cancer surgery through a smaller incision requires consistent illumination throughout the surgical cavity, so surgeons can clearly see and effectively remove the tumor. Using Stryker’s Intelligent Photonics technology to improve visibility during procedures such as lumpectomy and nipple-sparing mastectomy is critical.

“I am proud we can offer this surgery to the women in our community. All of our breast surgical oncologists have been trained in Hidden Scar techniques, allowing us to provide cutting-edge cancer surgery and improved aesthetics,” said Dr. Danielle Lipoff, Baystate Health breast surgeon, who, along with Mason and Baystate’s newest breast surgeon, Dr. Jesse Casaubon, perform the Hidden Scar technique at Baystate Medical Center in Springfield. Mason and Lipoff also bring the procedure to patients at Baystate Noble Hospital in Westfield, and Casaubon at Baystate Franklin Medical Center in Greenfield.