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Dr. Kapil Kumar

Dr. Kapil Kumar
Director − BLK Cancer
Centre & HOD − Surgical
Oncology
BLK Cancer Centre
BLK Super Speciality
Hospital, New Delhi



Life Saving Decisions

Preventing future Cancer risks with
Prophylactic Surgery

Prophylactic Surgery is a preventive surgery to remove organs or glands from the body which have high risk of developing Cancer in future.

THE CASE

Mrs. Archana Devi, a 40-year old lady from Delhi, was a carrier of BRCA1 Cancer gene and was at high risk of developing Cancer associated complications. BRCA are human genes that produce Tumour suppressor proteins. When these genes mutate, protein product is either not produced or does not function correctly. This can damage the DNA and may lead to cancer. Upon inspection, both her ovaries showed vascular proliferation. Final diagnosis indicated subcutaneous mastectomy specimen on the right side with focal stromal fi brosis. Further, uterus with bilateral Salpingo - oophorectomy specimen was also found.

THE PROCEDURE

She underwent Prophylactic Surgery for breast and ovaries at BLK Cancer Centre as a preventive measure to beat life threatening Breast and Ovarian Cancer which might have developed at a later stage because of its mutated BRCA genes.

THE RESULT

After the procedure, Mrs. Archana Devi was at a lower risk of developing Breast and Ovarian Cancer and associated complications. Motivated by Mrs. Archana Devi’s case, another lady with similar situation also underwent Laparoscopic B/L Salpingo-oopherectomy + Prophylactic left simple Mastectomy to prevent herself from any future Cancer development.

DISCUSSION

According to experts, women with the BRCA mutations have upto 50% greater chance of developing Breast and Ovarian Cancer. In most cases, the Cancer is well advanced before doctors, or patients, even know about it but by then it is too late. Centres of Excellence such as BLK Cancer Centre are working towards offering end-to-end solution to save women from deadly diseases with genetic screening, and preventive measures such as Prophylactic Surgery. Increased awareness, easy access and genetic screening have made it possible to identify the disease at an early stage and adopt possible preventive measures. Leading Hollywood Actress, Angelina Jolie, had undergone Prophylactic Surgery to reduce the risk of Ovarian and Breast Cancer. Her decision inspired and empowered thousands of women to come forward and take important health decisions.