Breast Cancer Treatment in Singapore

Breast cancer starts when a single cell in the breast tissue begins to divide and grow abnormally. They can spread within the breast and to the other organs. These cells mostly arise from ducts and lobules present in the breast. The treatment and prognosis of breast cancer mainly depend on the stage, its type and spread.

Breast cancer treatment in Singapore

Healthcare facilities standard in Singapore is high and reliable. Factors like world-class facilities, skilled doctors, geographical proximity and reputation of the country, makes Singapore one of the most preferred destinations. Breast cancer treatment in Singapore hospital offers top -of the line healthcare facilities, internationally trained Oncosurgeon, medical oncologist, and staff. Mostly the major hospitals in Singapore have international accreditation from Joint Commission International (JCI), ISO or OHSAS, which provides trust in the quality of services offered.\

Breast is women’s femininity therefore; it would be a traumatic experience for any women if diagnosed with breast cancer. It is a serious medical condition in which cells in breast grow out of control. It is the leading cause of death in Singapore and also was responsible for 29.6% of total deaths in Singapore in 2016. In order to face this ongoing race with breast cancer, the country has sharpened its healthcare system to deliver the highest quality treatment in a supportive, compassionate and innovative environment.

Cost comparison

The cost of breast cancer depends mainly on the stage of cancer. From diagnose and screening to ultrasound and surgery, there is a number of procedures which has to be performed when diagnosed with breast cancer. In screening, the cost of the mammogram, breast MRI and ultrasound is S$50- S$200, S$1,400 and S$160- S$300 respectively. However, these data are for private practices, to carry out the affordable Breast Cancer Screening Singapore, you can search for the public centres.

The Breast Cancer Treatment Cost in Singapore is around $20000 which includes single mastectomy. While in the USA and UAE, the estimated expense of the surgery is $15000 and $7000 respectively. The cost of Singapore may be higher than the other countries but with its advanced healthcare amenities and modern technology, a person can undergo a life-saving procedure without facing any hassle.

Treatment and Cost

25

Total Days
In Country

2 No. Travelers

5 Day in Hospital

20 Days Outside Hospital

Treatment cost starts from

USD 18500

Hospitals

About the Breast Cancer Treatment

The recent advances made in breast cancer treatment have revolutionized the way how women from this rare disorder are diagnosed and suggested a personalized treatment plan. These advances have made it easier for the doctors to arrive at a treatment plan, which is most suitable for the patient as per their individual characteristics and needs.

Different breast cancer treatment options help destruct complex mixture of cancer cells, which are otherwise difficult to treat using conventional breast cancer treatment. The treatment is started by the doctors handling the case as soon as the breast cancer diagnosis is confirmed.

Before the article delves into the different breast cancer treatment options, lets first take a look at how breast cancer develops and what are its symptoms and diagnosis methods.

Breast cancer: What do the statistics say?

Breast cancer primarily affects females aged above 40. However, that does not mean that it does not affect women aged below 40. Breast cancer can also affect males, although rarely.

Breast cancer starts in the cells of either one or both the breasts. It accounts for more than 16 percent of female cancer and contributes to 18.2 percent of all deaths that take place around the world because of cancer.

In the US alone, breast cancer affects more than 232,000 females and 2,200 males each year. It leads to death of more than 39,000 breast cancer patients in a year.

Breast Cancer Symptoms

The symptoms of breast cancer can be easily identified at home through breast self-examination. You should consult your physician on how to conduct this exam at home.

The most common breast cancer symptoms include:

  • Change in the size or shape of the breast
  • Lump in the breast
  • Swelling in armpit
  • Change in colour and shape of the nipples
  • Rash, redness or pitting on the breast skink
  • Pain in the breast or armpits
  • Abnormal discharge from the nipples

In case of more aggressive breast cancer called inflammatory breast cancer, severe redness and itching may be present.

The patients are advised to contact their physician as soon as they notice any of the symptoms of breast cancer. The physician is the best person to diagnose whether it is normal or inflammatory best cancer, and accordingly, suggest treatment for breast cancer.

Breast Cancer Causes

The exact reason that causes breast cancer is unclear, despite the fact that every eighth woman suffers from it. However, there are several factors that have been associated with the development of breast cancer. Some of the breast cancer risk factors include:

  • Prolonged use of birth control pills
  • Obesity
  • Use of hormone replacement therapy
  • High breast density
  • Alcohol addiction
  • No history of pregnancy
  • Pregnancy after 35
  • Exposure to radiation

The risk of breast cancer naturally increases as women age. The risk is also higher in women who have a family history of breast or ovarian cancer, possess BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes or who have had their periods before the age of 12.

How is Breast Cancer Treatment performed?

Most commonly, as a part of treatment for breast cancer, a surgery is conducted to remove the cancerous lump or growth from breasts. Depending on the extent of cancer and its stage, surgery may be accompanied by another form of treatment as well, which are conducted either before or after the surgery.

The doctor decides upon a breast cancer treatment plan that is most suitable for the patient. The decision may depend upon the extent of spread, the overall health of the patient, the stage and the type of breast cancer (inflammatory, cancer during pregnancy, lobular carcinoma, ductal carcinoma and invasive breast cancer).

The team that conducts breast cancer treatment includes a surgeon, medical oncologist, and a radiation oncologist. The different breast cancer treatment options are divided into two types:

Local Treatment: This type of treatment is localized, that is, it is only used to treat one specific location or primary site affected by cancer. It does not have any impact on the rest of the body.

The following are the two types of local treatment:

Surgery:

It is the most common form of treatment that targets to remove as much cancer from the primary location as possible. There are different types of surgeries, which can be selected by the doctor depending upon the requirement.

  • Mastectomy:
    In this type of breast cancer removal surgery, the entire breast is removed to eliminate cancer cells. It can involve either one or both the breasts.
  • Breast-conserving surgery:
    In this type of surgery, only the part of the breast containing cancer is removed. The goal is to remove just cancer and some part of surrounding healthy tissues and leave the rest of the breast as is.
  • Lymph node removal:
    This type of surgery is sometimes conducted in addition to either of the first two types of surgeries, in case cancer has spread to the nearby lymph nodes.
  • Breast reconstruction:
    This type of surgery is conducted after the removal of cancer, in case the patient demands to improve the appearance of the breast mounds after the removal surgery.

Radiation therapy:

Radiation is required by some breast cancer patients, mostly in addition to other types of treatment.  It is typically used in case of patients who have undergone mastectomy, breast-conserving surgery or if cancer has spread to other parts of the body. Delivering high dose radiation to the affected part of the body helps reduce the chances of cancer recurrence.

The radiation can either be delivered externally or by placing a small radioactive pallet in the affected area internally. The latter form of radiation therapy is known as brachytherapy.

Systemic Treatment:

This type of treatment involves the used of drugs that can be administered either orally or intravenously. The choice of drugs depends on the type of systemic treatment opted for, which, in turn, is dependent upon the extent and the type of cancer.

Chemotherapy, targeted therapy, and hormone therapy are the three primary types of systemic therapy for breast cancer treatment.

Of all the three forms of systemic treatment, chemotherapy is the most common. Chemotherapy is recommended before the surgery to reduce the size of the tumor and after the surgery to kill off the remaining cancer cells. It involves the intravenous administration of specific anti-cancer drugs.

Hormone therapy is most commonly used in cases when the patient has tested HER-2 positive in the biopsy. Targeted therapy, on the other hand, is less commonly used.

Recovery from Breast Cancer Treatment

Recovery after breast cancer treatment is less painful and traumatic as compared to some of the other types of critical cancers. Therefore are, however, certain changes that breast cancer patients may have to deal with after their treatment. Some of these changes include the following:

  • The menstruation cycle is almost always affected by breast cancer patients during chemotherapy and radiation therapy. The patient experiences a temporary menopause that lasts for over a few months after the treatment. Therefore, the patient is expected to experience a few symptoms related to menopause, such as fatigue, mood swings, and hot flushes.
  • The fertility of the woman is also affected by the treatment. Therefore, they may feel affected physically and mentally and may need a strong emotional support during the recovery period.
  • In some women, the affected breast or both the breasts are removed surgically as a part of the treatment. As a result, they may lose their confidence because of their changed physical experience. However, they can opt for cosmetic surgery to regain the size and shape of their breast.
  • The side effects of cancer treatment such as extreme weakness, reduce appetite, weight loss, hair loss, and reduced immunity can be painful to deal with. Other side effects such as vomiting, nausea, headache, and joint pain can be effectively managed with the help of proper medications.

The medications after cancer treatment may continue for a few years to keep the regrowth of cancer cells in check. It may take several months for the patient to recover from the after-effects of cancer treatment.

Patient Stories

Frequently Asked Questions

Why go for Breast Cancer Treatment in Singapore?

The treatment plan for breast cancer, best decided by a multi-disciplinary team, will depend upon on the type of cancer, its stage, grade and tumor size, and whether the cancer cells are hormone sensitive, or not. Treatment seekers usually make their way to abroad if the cancer cells start developing in their body, but it is important which country you are aiming at. Singapore has been actively promoting its medical tourism industry by attracting up to 2000 patients annually. From 2011 to 2015, about 1,927 women are diagnosed with breast cancer in Singapore each year and thus, Singapore has already strengthened its healthcare system to fight against the most occurring disease in the country, that is, breast cancer. Singapore draws tourists with its world-class and well-equipped infrastructure, cleanliness and English speaking staffs. Being the leading destination for breast cancer for its cost-effectiveness, Singapore offers the best pre and post-treatment handled by topmost surgeons.

What is the cost of Breast Cancer Treatment in Singapore?

In addition to the emotional and physical challenges, breast cancer can also be financially debilitating. As it comes in different forms, breast cancer surgeon will determine the suitable treatment for you based on the type of breast cancer, its stage, size, and so on. To evaluate the extent and the nature of the lump growing in the breast, mammogram and breast ultrasound are advised to the patients. The Cost of Mammogram in Singapore and ultrasound is S$ 50- S$200 and S$160- S$ 300 respectively.

Surgery of Lumpectomy cost S$4,866- S$7,112 where the surgeon removes cancer and a small amount of surrounding tissue while surgery of Mastectomy will costs S$12,686- S$18,238 in which removal of the whole breast takes place. Although this data are for private practices, public hospitals certainly offer a lower cost. On the top of that, if you have undergone for breast reconstruction after a mastectomy, the expense will go up to S$20,000 to S$50,000 at a private hospital, depending upon the type of reconstruction.

Which are the top Hospitals and top Oncologists for Breast Cancer Treatment in Singapore?

Cancer is the most prevalent type of cancer among women and in Singapore, 1 out of every 16 women is likely to be afflicted by breast cancer. Thus, the country offers a comprehensive range of specialist and a full range of medical, surgical, and diagnostic service for battling cancer to provide a reliable Breast Cancer Treatment Singapore. Check the list of top hospitals for breast cancer treatment in Singapore:

  • Mount Elizabeth Hospitals

  • Gleneagles Hospitals

  • Raffles Hospitals

  • National Cancer treatment

  • National University Hospitals

  • KK Women’s and Children’s Hospitals

Now, below are the top oncologists for breast cancer treatment in Singapore:

  • Dr. Lynette Ngo Su Mien

  • Dr. Koong Heng Nung

  • Dr. Ho Gay Hui

  • Dr. Preetha Madhukumar

  • Dr. Yong Wei Sean

  • Dr. Tang Choong Leong

  • Dr. Kho Sunn Sunn Patricia

  • Dr. Tan Hiang Khoon

Which are the best cities for Breast Cancer Treatment in Singapore?

For breast cancer treatment in Singapore, you can pay a visit to Mount Elizabeth Hospitals which is located at Orchard and Novena. Also, Gleneagles Hospital at Napier road, National University Hospitals located in NUH medical centre at 5 Lower Kent Ridge Rd, and KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital at 100 Bukit Timah Rd, where breast cancer can be treated successfully.

What is the success rate for Breast Cancer Treatment in Singapore?

Diagnosed with breast cancer means many trips to hospitals or cancer care centres and the success rate highly depends on the stage of breast cancer. In Singapore, the scenario of breast cancer tells the success story of those patients who get acquainted with their early symptoms. According to Singapore’s latest cancer registry report, the patients who were diagnosed at stage 1 had a 91% chance of surviving as compared to that 21 % of cancer patients who were diagnosed at stage 4.

What is the health care infrastructure of Singapore / Why should opt for Singapore as a destination for your medical treatment?
Singapore is generally known for its well-managed health care infrastructure and has an efficient and widespread system of healthcare. Singapore was ranked 6th in the World Health Organization's ranking of the world's health systems in the year 2000. Bloomberg ranked Singapore's healthcare system the most efficient in the world in 2014. Three main healthcare groups exist in Singapore:
  • National Healthcare Group
  • National University Health System
  • SingHealth
The 10 public hospitals in Singapore comprise 8 general hospitals (AH, SGH, NUH, CGH, TTSH, KTPH, NTFGH & SKH), and 2 specialized hospitals (KKH & IMH). In addition, there are 9 national specialty centres for cancer (NCCS & NCIS), cardiac (NHCS & NUHCS), eye (SNEC), skin (NSC), neuroscience (NNI) and dental care (NDCS & NUCOHS). The private healthcare infrastructure in Singapore is also well established. The payment methods include private payment gateways or private insurance companies. You can expect better technology to be used in private hospitals in Singapore. Various procedures like stem cell therapy and cancer research are conducted in Singapore.
What are the conditions of the hospitals in Singapore? Are they JCI certified? What is the quality of the support staff in the hospitals?
The Joint Commission International (JCI) is a global leader in health care accreditation. JCI accreditation is considered a gold standard in worldwide health care. It provides the most skilled and experienced healthcare professionals in the medical industry, as evaluators of the rigorous international standards in healthcare quality and patient safety. Here are some of the JCI certified hospitals in Singapore :
  • Mount Elizabeth Hospital
  • Singapore National Eye Centre
  • National Dental Centre
  • Raffles Hospital
  • National University Hospital
  • Gleneagles Hospital
  • Singapore General Hospital
  • National Heart Centre Singapore
  • Changi General Hospital
  • National Cancer Centre
  • National Skin Centre
  • Johns Hopkins Singapore International Medical Centre
  • Tan Tock Seng Hospital
Are the doctors/surgeons in Singapore of the best quality?
Since Singapore is known all over the world for some of the best medical treatments all across the globe, you can surely expect the best quality of doctors and surgeons here. This country has a very high quality of life and hence the health of people is of high priority.
What is the process for obtaining a medical visa in India?
People who wish to go to Singapore as a tourist for social purposes or seeking medical treatment, and require a longer period of stay beyond the Visit Pass granted on entry into Singapore, may submit an application for extension of stay (not more than 89 days from date of entry) online using the e-Service of ICA. All extension applications must be submitted online using the e-service at least seven days prior to the expiry of the visit pass to avoid overstaying. Extension of visit will not be accepted over the counter. Every visit pass issued to any person as a tourist or for the purpose of a social visit or medical treatment shall be subjected to the condition that the holder shall not engage in any form of employment (paid or unpaid) or in any business, profession or occupation in Singapore during the validity of that pass unless he is a holder of a valid work pass issued under the Employment of Foreign Manpower Act. Do visit the ICA website for further information.
What support services does MediGence provide in the United Arab Emirates?
MediGence enables you to plan and manage your medical decisions better. These are some of our services offered:
  • Expert Opinion
    We help you seek an Expert Opinion on your diagnosis and treatment from an experienced team of doctors at MediGence and specialists from a reputable hospital.
  • Hospital Recommendation
    We recommend a hospital or a healthcare institution that is best suited for you, based on your ailment and its criticality.
  • 360-degree Hospital Review
    We give you a transparent and holistic view of the hospital and its infrastructure, accreditation, facilities, and expertise to give you confidence.
  • Doctor Validation and Communication
    We share a comprehensive profile of the treating doctor and also arrange a call to clear queries regarding treatment if needed.
  • Options to Choose From
    Based on your choice of destination and other preferences, we provide you multiple options with respect to hospitals and doctors to choose from.
  • 24X7 Patient Care Support
    A dedicated patient case manager stays in constant touch with you to help you at every step of the decision-making process and resolve queries that you may have.
  • Transparent Treatment Cost and Other Expenses
    We give a clear and accurate indication of the total cost of treatment including treatment, stay, meals, and other expenses.
  • Visa Assistance
    We provide and help prepare documentation for visa approval and coordinate with the embassy to expedite the visa process.
  • Accommodation Arrangements
    We propose to you a choice of accommodation based on your preference such as long stay, short stay, or luxury properties.
Which are the best cities in Singapore for medical treatment?
Singapore is a sovereign island city in itself. So you can find many options for treatment in Singapore itself, without having to travel too much.

Our team of healthcare experts would be happy to assist you

Get In Touch
or call

(+1) 424 283 4838