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Surgeons offer latest breast cancer procedure

Two Sutter Health surgeons are currently performing a state-of-the-art procedure that has drastically changed the way that breast lumpectomies are performed in patients currently undergoing treatment for breast cancer.  

Dr. Lauren Strickland, a fellowship-trained breast surgeon practicing with Sutter Gould Medical Foundation in Modesto, was the first Sutter surgeon in the Central Valley region to utilize the pioneering technology that eliminates the need to place a wire near the tumor site before surgery. 

By utilizing the SAVI SCOUT Wire-Free Radar Breast Localization technology, surgeons like Strickland – and Dr. Dean Sloan, who practices for Sutter at their Hammer Lane location in Stockton – are able to eliminate the use of wires and improve outcomes for patients already facing a scary situation. 

“Patients used to have to have the wire inserted the day of the surgery and then drive over to the hospital – if the surgery had to be canceled for some reason, they were stuck there with a wire in their breast,” said Strickland, who performs the procedure at Memorial Medical Center in Modesto. “It could become inconvenient and this process adds to the safety and the comfort of the patient, an

Dr. Sloan

d simplifies the process. These women are already going through one of the most difficult times in their lives, and this process just makes it a little bit easier.” 

The SAVI SCOUT procedure involves the patient having a reflector, which is smaller than a grain of rice, implanted into the area of the tumor to allow surgeons to better locate the area before it is excised. The implanted reflector is the first non-radioactive implant used in wire-free breast localization procedures, and unlike the wire it replaces has no restrictions on the length of time that it can remain in the breast. 

According to Strickland, the technology is especially useful for tumors that aren’t palpable – meaning that surgeons can’t feel them with their hands – and serves as a replacement for the traditional needle localization lumpectomy that had to be performed on the same day as their surgery and almost always in a different location that required the patient to be mobile after the wire had been inserted. 

Patients undergoing the procedure couldn’t be happier with the changes. 

“I was so pleased that it did not change the appearance of my breast – no indentation or unevenness,” said Sutter patient Corrin King. “I am so grateful to Dr. Strickland.”

And the process doesn’t always have to be completed in a traditional hospital. 

According to Katrina Holmes, the Regional Director of Central Valley Sutter Surgery Center Division – in charge of the Stockton, Briggsmore and Elk Grove surgery centers and the Stanislaus Surgical Hospital – the process is now being performed by Dr. Dean Sloan in an outpatient setting. 

“Stockton Surgery Center is the first outpatient surgery center to provide this innovative technology to our patients through our surgeons in the valley,” Holmes said. “I am excited that we continue to advance women’s health in San Joaquin and Stanislaus Counties.”

The Stockton Surgery Center was also recently named as one of the six outpatient surgery centers to receive a Women’s Choic

The technology was first employed within the Sutter Health system at Mills-Peninsula Medical Center in Burlingame, and has since been incorporated into practice at California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco, Memorial Medical Center in Modesto, Sutter Medical Center in Sacramento and Sutter Roseville Medical Center. e Award designating the site one of America’s Best Ambulatory Surgery Centers. 

For additional information about Sutter Health or the Sutter Gould Medical Foundation that are performing the SAVI SCOUT procedure in the Stockton and Modesto areas, visit

To contact reporter Jason Campbell email or call 209.249.3544.