During a mastectomy, the breast is removed completely. However, there are several kinds of mastectomy surgeries available. A skin-sparing mastectomy preserves some of the tissue; in certain cases, a nipple sparing mastectomy will keep the nipple intact thus leading to an improved cosmetic result.
In some patients, lumpectomy surgery is paired with radiation, but may still need to be followed by a mastectomy later in life. Women who chose a lumpectomy have the same chance of surviving breast cancer as those who get a mastectomy. In both surgeries, there is still a chance that the cancerous cells can return.