Comprehensive Breast Care Specialist

Surgical Care of the Virginias

Frederick W. Barker, MD FACS

Breast and General Surgeon located in Bluefield, VA

While breast cancer remains a top concern for most women, it isn’t the only problem that can affect a woman’s breasts. At Surgical Care of the Virginias’ MammoCare in Bluefield, Virginia, Frederick Barker, MD, specializes in comprehensive breast care, helping women navigate the myriad issues that can affect their breasts. From screening to surgery, and follow-up, Dr. Barker is available for all of your breast care needs. To learn more, call or use the online scheduling tool.

Comprehensive Breast Care Q & A

What conditions can affect the breast?

With breast cancer touching the lives of an estimated 1 in 8 women in the United States, this disease remains a top concern when it comes to a woman’s breast health. But breast cancer isn’t the only problem that can affect a woman’s breasts. There are many non-cancerous problems that can affect your breasts too, including:

  • Cyclic breast pain due to hormone changes
  • Noncyclic breast pain, which encompasses any discomfort outside of your hormonal cycles
  • Mastitis, which is an infection in your breast tissue

In addition to these conditions, many women develop benign lumps or masses in their breast tissue, which, at best, simply go away on their own or, at worst, cause considerable discomfort.  At MammoCare, Dr. Barker has the experience and technology to address a full spectrum of breast problems, often in a single visit.

What is involved in comprehensive breast care?

Most noncancerous breast disorders can be managed by any experienced general surgeon who has access to high quality breast imaging services including mammography, breast ultrasound, breast MRI, and minimally invasive breast biopsy equipment.

However, breast cancer management can be very complicated and invariably requires a team approach. Radiologist, pathologist, surgeon, medical oncologist, radiation oncologist, and occasionally a plastic surgeon all have important roles to play.

At MammoCare, Dr. Barker serves as the team's captain, making sure that your care and follow-up are properly coordinated. Dr. Barker’s special interest and experience in breast cancer means you may be given treatment options locally which would otherwise require you to travel several hours away to receive.

When you visit MammoCare to find out whether you might have breast cancer, Dr. Barker can frequently make a same-day diagnosis thanks to 3D mammography, breast ultrasound, and minimally invasive breast biopsy.

To ensure an accurate diagnosis, your mammograms are double-read by Dr. Barker and a breast radiologist who specializes exclusively in breast imaging. Dr. Barker also personally reviews your pathology slides of biopsies and surgical specimens with the pathologist.

Should you require a breast MRI, facilities with the best equipment and most experienced radiologists are readily available locally at Princeton Community Hospital, Bluefield Regional Medical Center, and Clinch Valley Medical Center.

What if I need surgery?

Dr. Barker is a thought leader in the delivery of breast care in rural Appalachia. He was the first doctor in the region to offer minimally invasive stereotactic and ultrasound-guided core biopsies, and he was an early adopter of sentinel lymph node biopsy for accurately sampling axillary lymph nodes in women with breast cancer. Sentinel lymph node biopsy is important because it reduces your chance of developing arm lymphedema after surgery.

To ensure that you have the best chance of clear margins and optimal cosmetic results, Dr. Barker has incorporated oncoplastic techniques into his surgical practice.

Dr. Barker was also the first surgeon in the region to offer accelerated partial breast irradiation, which can dramatically reduce the number of radiotherapy visits in certain women who choose lumpectomy and radiation.  

Recently, Dr. Barker became the region's first surgeon to offer intraoperative radiation therapy, which provides many women with a “one and done” breast-conserving surgical option.

For more detailed printed information about breast cancer treatment you might like to visit these sites: https://www.nccn.org/ for more information about invasive breast cancer; non-invasive breast cancer; metastatic breast cancer; A very informative video about breast cancer can be found at http://youandbreastcancer.com/en-bc/home.

For comprehensive and compassionate breast care, call Dr. Barker or use the online scheduling tool to set up an appointment.