SW Florida Breast Surgery, part of the GenesisCare network, center for breast surgery
At Southwest Florida Breast Surgery, our practice focuses on treating both benign (non-cancerous) and malignant (cancerous) breast disease.
Our breast surgeon, Elizabeth Arguelles, MD, FACS, is board certified and an expert in the surgical management of all breast conditions and breast cancer. She is also certified in the hidden scar technique, which is an advanced approach to removing breast cancer or high-risk tissue. Within this procedure, the incision is placed in a location that is hard to see so the scar is not visible when it heals. Additionally, she is trained in oncoplastic breast surgery, which focuses on preserving the natural shape of the breast.
Amy Vanosdale, PA-C, is a board-certified physician’s assistant trained in breast disease management and works closely alongside Dr. Arguelles while caring for patients.
Through a multidisciplinary team approach, Dr. Arguelles and her staff work to educate you on your disease, as well as treatment options, so you have the support and resources necessary to navigate your breast health issues.
What we offer
Benign breast conditions
Benign breast conditions are non-cancerous disorders that cause unusual changes or growths in the breast. While some benign breast conditions require treatment, others do not. Our care team is available to discuss whether surgery is an option for your individual needs.
We offer treatment for the following benign breast conditions:
Breast masses or lumps can be caused by many things including cysts, normal dense breast tissue, benign tumors (such as fibroadenomas and most phyllodes tumors), hematomas (bruising) from trauma, and cancers. Because there are so many causes for breast lumps, it is important to check your breast each month for changes and report any concerns to your doctor right away. Often a lump will be checked by physical examination, a mammogram and/or ultrasound. This will help determine what treatment is needed.
Breast atypia is when the ductal or lobular cells in the breast grow too much and start to look unusual under the microscope. These changes put you at a higher risk of developing breast cancer. Treatment may include surgical removal of the atypical cells, and/or a referral to a medical oncologist for medication treatment that can decrease your risk of developing breast cancer in the future.
Many women experience breast pain throughout various parts of their menstrual cycle due to normal hormonal changes. This type of breast pain is common. However, pain can also be caused by infection, trauma, injury, or in some instances, cancer. If you are having unusual breast pain, your doctor will thoroughly examine your breasts and discuss lifestyle changes to help manage the pain, as well as any appropriate treatment options if necessary.
Fibrocystic breast disease is when you have frequent cysts that may come and go in the glandular area of your breasts, or where the breast makes milk. It is most commonly found in young women with dense breasts and is often associated with pain and/or tenderness.
Performing self-breast examinations if you have fibrocystic breast disease is important so you can be more familiar with any changes in your breast and notify your physician immediately. Your doctor will check your breast with a physical examination and may order imaging studies. Sometimes treatment may include a fine-needle aspiration to drain fluid from the cysts through a very small needle. In rare instances, surgery may be recommended.
The most common type of nipple discharge is called physiologic. Just like dry skin sheds from your hands or hair follicles fall from your head, the lining of the milk ducts releases cells through physiologic discharge. This form of discharge can be white, yellow, green or black in color.
Other causes of nipple discharge can be caused by cysts, hormonal imbalances, papillomas (growths in the ducts) or ductal carcinoma in situ (stage 0 breast cancer). Nipple discharge is the most concerning when it is bloody or clear and coming only from one breast, or is accompanied by other symptoms, such as pain, headaches, blurry vision, or fevers, for example.
Any form of new nipple discharge should be reported to your doctor, who will perform a physical examination and may request imaging studies, such as a mammogram, ultrasound and/or MRI. In some instances, a biopsy, surgery or other treatment may be necessary depending on the cause of the discharge.
Mastitis is a breast tissue infection, which most frequently occurs when a mother is breastfeeding an infant and has not fully emptied milk from the breast. If mastitis or an infection occurs when not breastfeeding, an examination by your provider will likely be performed, as well as imaging studies such as a mammogram, ultrasound or MRI. During these tests, you will likely also be checked for any abscesses that could have formed, which is a collection of pus that often requires a healthcare clinician to drain. Treatment may include antibiotics or other medications.
If you have a first-degree relative who has a history of breast cancer, such as your mother or sister, your risk of developing breast cancer is much higher, and can even double your risk compared to someone at normal risk. Your doctor may recommend increased screenings through mammograms or other imaging studies, as well as genetic testing, based on your individual situation.
Five to 10 percent of breast cancers are associated with genetic mutations, or damaged genes. You may have heard of BRCA 1, BRCA 2 or PALB-2 genes, which when positive for abnormality, can increase your risk for both breast and ovarian cancers. If you have a family history of breast or ovarian cancers or are at high risk of developing either cancer, your physician may recommend genetic testing.
If you are positive for an abnormal gene, you may be recommended to do increased screenings, as well as preventative treatment options such as medications or surgery (such as a prophylactic mastectomy to remove your breast(s) or prophylactic oophorectomy to remove your ovaries).
Gynecomastia is when the breast tissue in a male overdevelops and causes enlargement. Often, it is associated with hormonal changes in puberty but can occur at any age. While many gynecomastia causes are unknown, it has been linked to taking certain medication, drug use (including marijuana and amphetamines) and alcohol use, as well as kidney, thyroid or testicle diseases.
If you suspect you have gynecomastia, your provider will see you for a physical examination and may require you to undergo imaging studies. Treatment may include medication changes or being placed on medication, or in some instances, surgery.
Additionally, we offer a high-risk screening program for women who are at an increased risk of developing breast cancer, as well as offer prophylactic (preventative) single and double mastectomy. Contact us today to discuss if these options are appropriate for your unique and individual situation.
One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime. There are several different types of breast cancer, including:
Also known as stage 0 breast cancer, cancer cells are found within the milk ducts of the breast. It is usually treated with surgery, endocrine therapy and radiation therapy. When treated appropriately, it has a nearly 100% survival rate at 10 years.
Also known as lobular neoplasia, this is when abnormal cells are found in the breast lobules. It is not actually cancer, but it may increase your risk of developing breast cancer in the future. High-risk screenings with MRI are typically recommended and treatment may include surgery and medications to reduce your risk of developing breast cancer.
This type of breast cancer is found in the ductal tissue of the breast and is the most common cancer cell type. It is when the cancer cells clump together to create a mass. While this type of breast cancer can be localized to the breast, it can spread to other areas of the body. Treatment may include surgery (often a lumpectomy), chemotherapy, hormone therapy, targeted therapy, and/or radiation therapy.
This is a less common type of invasive breast cancer that tends to be difficult to detect with imaging. Often, an ultrasound or MRI is needed. It is when the cancer cells clump together to create a mass. While this type of breast cancer can be localized to the breast, it can spread to other areas of the body. Treatment may include surgery (often a lumpectomy), chemotherapy, hormone therapy, and/or radiation therapy.
This is a rare but rapidly developing and aggressive type of invasive breast cancer which can make the breast appear to be red, swollen and tender. The skin can have a characteristic appearance like orange skin, “peau d’orange,” due to the infiltration of cancer cells into the dermal lymphatics, and the breast may be warm to the touch. Treatment typically includes chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation therapy.
This is a rare form of breast cancer where the skin of the nipple and areola appears to be flaky, scaly, crusting or oozing, often resembling eczema symptoms. The skin may also appear to be dry, red or shiny. Treatment typically includes surgery, and may also include chemotherapy, hormone therapy and/or radiation therapy.
Roughly 1% of breast cancers develop in men. While breast cancer in men is not common, a man is at a higher risk if he has a family history of breast, ovarian or prostate cancer, or an associated genetic abnormality (BRCA1 or BRCA2). Typically, male breast cancer is treated the same as breast cancer in females – surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy.
While breast cancer treatment is tailored to the individual type of cancer and each patient’s unique needs, breast cancer surgery is a critical component for the treatment of almost all breast cancers and is typically performed as the first treatment option.
Dr. Arguelles is committed to providing high-quality, compassionate care focused on removing your cancer, while also providing the best possible cosmetic results.
Our breast cancer treatment services include:
- Breast biopsy
- Mastectomy (nipple sparing, skin sparing, total, and modified radical)
- Oncoplastic breast cancer surgery, including hidden scar surgery technique
- Lymph node biopsy
- Sentinel lymph node biopsy
- Axillary lymph node dissection
- Port placement and removal
Additionally, we collaborate closely with other medical specialties, including plastic and reconstructive surgery, medical oncology and radiation oncology, to ensure you receive the most comprehensive breast cancer care.
Contact our center today to schedule a consultation.
Hablamos español en nuestra clínica.
View videos about SW Florida Breast Surgery
Mon – Fri 8am – 5pm
Bus line, taxi, Uber, ample parking