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Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

Breast Cancer

Our providers see patients in the Maggie Daley Center for Women’s Cancer Care within Prentice Women’s Hospital, the only dedicated women’s hospital in the Chicagoland area.

Cancer begins when normal cells in the breast begin to change and grow uncontrollably, forming a mass called a tumor. A tumor can be benign (noncancerous) or malignant (cancerous, meaning it can spread to other parts of the body).

We treat several types of breast cancer, including inflammatory breast cancer, male breast cancer, ductal carcinoma in situ and metastatic breast cancer. The most common type of breast cancer is ductal carcinoma, which begins in the cells of the ducts. Breast cancer can also begin in the cells of the lobules and in other tissues in the breast. Ductal carcinoma in situ is a condition in which abnormal cells are found in the lining of the ducts but they haven't spread outside the duct. Breast cancer that has spread from where it began in the ducts or lobules to surrounding tissue is called invasive breast cancer. In inflammatory breast cancer, the breast looks red and swollen and feels warm because the cancer cells block the lymph vessels in the skin.

Our Experts

Our experts work together in a multidisciplinary team (including dedicated, talented nursing staff and Lurie Cancer Center’s Supportive Oncology Team) to help create a comprehensive, individualized treatment plan and provide you with exceptional support. Get to know our physicians and the many other experts who will play an important role in your care.

meet the experts

Clinical Trials

The Lurie Cancer Center is typically involved in more than 300 clinical trials at a given time, covering a broad range of subjects that may be relevant to your diagnosis. Browse our clinical trials to participate and help test new treatments.

find a related clinical trial

Patient Support

We offer a number of services to help patients and their families cope with the challenges of cancer treatment.

see all our support services

Featured Programs

Lynn Sage Comprehensive Breast Center

Located in Prentice Women’s Hospital on Northwestern Medicine’s Chicago campus, the Lynn Sage Comprehensive Breast Center, provides leading-edge breast imaging and screening mammography services, as well as diagnostic breast imaging evaluation.


Nurse Navigator

Our breast cancer nurse navigator, Lynn Galuska Elsen, RN, BDN, provides patients and their families with information about their diagnosis, treatment and available support services. Navigators serve as educators, advocates and guides before, during and after treatment as well as throughout survivorship. Contact her at 312-472-5821.

Lynn Galuska Elsen

Bluhm Family Breast Cancer Early Detection and Prevention Program

The Bluhm Family Breast Cancer Early Detection and Prevention Program offers comprehensive risk assessment and risk management for women concerned about breast cancer. Care is provided by a multidisciplinary team of healthcare professionals, utilizing the resources of the Lynn Sage Comprehensive Breast Center at Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

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The Lynn Sage Breast Cancer Survivorship Program

The Lynn Sage Breast Cancer Survivorship Program addresses the unique needs of women with breast cancer as they complete treatment and enter into survivorship. Visit the program's page to find out how to make an appointment and learn more about what to expect.

Learn more

Lurie Cancer Center Hispanic Breast Clinic

To address the needs of our Spanish-speaking patients, we created the Lurie Cancer Center Hispanic Breast Clinic at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. Led by oncologist Claudia Tellez, MD, our clinic includes a multidisciplinary team of breast cancer experts, supportive care and administrative staff who will work with you and your family to develop the best possible treatment plan.

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