Physician Detail

Camelia Lawrence, MD, FACS

Director of Breast Surgery, The Hospital of Central Connecticut and MidState Medical Center

4.9 /5
75 surveys
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Practice

Hartford HealthCare Medical Group

Specialty

Breast Surgery < Accepting new patients for this specialty

Areas of Interest

Axilla Management, Breast Cancer Prevention, Breast Cancer Research, Breast Disease, Breast Health, Hidden Scar Surgery, High Risk Patients, Nipple Sparing Mastectomy, Oncologic Plastic Surgery

Physician Quicklink

https://midstatemedical.org/CameliaLawrence

Institute URL

https://hartfordhealthcare.org/cancer

Phone

860.224.5416

Call for Appointment

Gender
Female

Languages
English

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Office Locations


  • Hartford HealthCare Cancer Institute

    201 North Mountain Road
    Suite 102
    Plainville, CT 06062
    Get Directions >>

    Phone: 860.224.5416
    Fax: 860.224.5406


Bio

It is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and there is always so much to talk about. Doctors and providers are using new ways to treat this disease. Important steps are being taken at the Hartford HealthCare Cancer Institute and joining us now to talk about it all is Doctor Camelia Lawrence… she is a breast surgeon and also the Director Breast Surgery at the Institute.

Q. Once you have a diagnosis of breast cancer, how do you even know where to begin?

A. The average patient does not always know where to begin. Patients rely on the guidance of their doctor or clinician once an abnormality has been identified on their mammogram. At HHC, our women's health coordinator is embedded within our breast program for this very reason - to assist patients through what can be an anxiety-provoking period.

Q. Once you’ve met with the women’s health coordinator, they really help get you set up with the team. How is this approach different than what was previously done?

A. Traditionally, the woman would wait for her physician to be notified first. Sometimes an additional appointment would be require. The women's health coordinate bridges this gap. She communicates directly in real time with the ordering physician who then provides guidance regarding preference for breast surgical consultation. This approach allows some women to have same day consultations and biopsy when warranted. Physicians want their patient to be plugged into treatment as soon as possible.

Q. Early diagnosis is key, how is your organization getting this done?

A. At Hartford HealthCare, we have re-imagined the patient experience. We are making it easier and more convenient for patients to obtain screening mammograms. And if an abnormality is identify, we are right there to guide you through the process with compassionate care in a timely manner. It minimizes the anxiety of the unknown and definitely decrease loss to follow up.

Q. How are you partnering with the community to help reach others who may not know where to start?

A. We have partnered with several community groups to educate and empower women and their families about breast cancer and the importance of early detection. We've hosted events at our centers but we also meet patients in their respective communities to improve access to care. Physician advocacy within the community can have a real impact and we are leading the way to building those trusted partnerships.

Thank you, Dr. Lawrence for this great information and promising outlook for women. If you would like to learn more please call 855.HHC.HERE.

KNOWING IF YOU’RE AT RISK FOR BREAST CANCER… HOW DO YOU KNOW WHEN YOU SHOULD GET A MAMMOGRAM?

JOINING US IS TO EXPLAIN MORE IS DR. CAMELIA LAWRENCE, BREAST SURGEON AT THE HARTFORD HEALTHCARE CANCER INSTITUTE…

Q. WHAT’S HAPPENING IN THE FIELD OF BREAST CANCER?

A. Breast cancer is a significant health concern for women and their families. About 1 in 8 women in the US will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of their lifetime - and CT has one of the highest rates in the country. Notably, African American women are twice as likely to die of breast cancer. The Hartford Healthcare Cancer Institute is a state of the art, Comprehensive Breast Center. The center houses all the services needed for the management of breast patients including the latest advance treatments, and a multidisciplinary team of experts all in one location. The easier the access, the more likely patients are to get the treatments and support they need.

Q. WHERE IS BREAST CANCER RESEARCH AND TREATMENT GOING…WHAT’S NEXT?

A. Researchers are working to find better ways to treat breast cancer, and to improve the quality of life of patients and survivors. Triple negative breast cancers are more aggressive with increase rates of recurrence and metastatic disease. Since triple-negative breast cancers cannot be treated with hormone therapy, the treatment options are limited to chemotherapy. Other potential targets for new breast cancer drugs are being explored. Drugs based on targets, such as kinase inhibitors and immunotherapy, are now being studied to treat triple-negative breast cancers, either by themselves, in combination, or with chemotherapy.

THANK YOU, DR. LAWRENCE FOR THIS GREAT INFORMATION. IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO LEARN MORE, CALL 1-855-HHC-HERE.

Camelia Lawrence, MD, FACS, is a breast surgeon with the Hartford HealthCare Cancer Institute. She is a member of The Hospital of Central Connecticut’s Breast Center team.

Board-certified in surgery and fellowship-trained in advanced breast cancer surgery, she specializes in benign and malignant breast disease.

Dr. Lawrence has more than 13 years of experience in breast surgery, including reconstructive and plastic surgeries.

Before joining the Hartford HealthCare Cancer Institute, she practiced at St. Vincent’s Medical Center in Bridgeport.

She has been recognized numerous times for her work in the field of breast care, including being a 2017 “Women Leading the Way” honoree from the American Cancer Society, a 2017 “Doctor of Distinction” by the Fairfield County Business Journal; a Lynn Sage Breast Cancer Achievement Award recipient; a Susan G. Komen “More than Pink” honoree; and received the “Dr. Kenneth Woodward Memorial Award” in recognition for improving the health status of under-served patients.

She earned her medical degree from the Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, completed her General Surgery Residency from the Western Medical Center/New York Medical College, and (Breast) Surgical Oncology Fellowship from the John Wayne Cancer Institute.

Dr. Lawrence joins a talented team of providers including Elizabeth Riordan, MD, Leah Bassin, MD, and Katherine Del Prato, APRN. Along with fellow providers and support staff, she is dedicated to providing attentive, personalized care and guidance throughout the diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer on into survivor-ship and recovery.

Dr. Lawrence’s office is at the Hartford HealthCare Cancer Institute at The Hospital of Central Connecticut, 201 North Mountain Road, Suite 102, Plainville. To make an appointment or for more information, please call 860-224-5416.

Dr. Camilia Lawrence, Breast Surgeon at the Hartford HealthCare Cancer Institute discusses a groundbreaking study published by the New England Journal of Medicine that found women with early stage breast cancer may not need chemotherapy as a form of treatment.

Q. Hartford HealthCare (HHC) This study sounds very promising. Tell us about the study – what were the findings?

A. The TailorX clinical trial followed over 10,000 women diagnosed with breast cancer between 2006 and 2010. Approximately 6700 women had recurrence scores between 11 and 25 which placed them in the intermediate risk group. Past research showed that women with scores between 0-10 can skip chemotherapy and those with scores greater than 25 benefited from adding chemotherapy to their hormonal regimen. The recurrence score is derived from a 21gene assay that analyzes the activity of a group of genes that can affect how a cancer is likely to behave and respond to treatment. This information helps your physician to determine how likely you will benefit from chemotherapy. The 6700 women were randomized to either receive hormonal therapy alone or hormonal therapy and chemotherapy. They were followed for nine years. The study results showed that the overall survival was about the same in both groups and there was no benefit to adding chemotherapy for most patients in the intermediate group.

Q. HHC: How does this dovetail with what precision medicine is?

A. This study echoes the trajectory of precision medicine. It takes into account individual variability in genes and uses that information to select a treatment approach tailored specifically for that patient. It is in contrast to a one-size-fits-all approach. Moving forward many cancers will be treated in this manner –taking into consideration cancer genetic variations, environment and lifestyle of the patient.

Q. HHC: Where is breast cancer research and treatment going…what’s next?

A. Breast cancer treatment is gravitating towards less invasive approaches. With advances in screening, early detection and patient education, we will begin to identify most cancers at it earliest stage which offers the best chance for cure. As evident by the TailorX trial, we will change our line of thinking to better understand that sometimes less is more. We now know that size may not be as critical as we once thought and that tumor biology trumps the size of the lesion. In addition with novel chemotherapeutic options, I think we will see less aggressive surgical interventions – perhaps even total elimination of complete axillary dissection and mitigation of the associated risk of chronic upper extremity lymphedema.

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Education

Medical School

  • Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry MD

Internship

  • Westchester Medical Center/New York Medical College, General Surgery

Residency

  • Westchester Medical Center/New York Medical College, General Surgery

Fellowship

  • John Wayne Cancer Institute, Breast - Surgical Oncology

Faculty Appointments

Quinnipiac University, Assistant Professor


Ratings

Reviews from across the web.

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Insurance Accepted*

Aetna, Anthem, BCBS Medicare, Cigna Healthcare, Colonial Cooperative Care, Community Health Network of Connecticut, Inc., Connecticare, Connecticare Commercial, Connecticare Medicare, Corvel, Coventry, Essence Healthcare, Evercare, First Health Group Corp., Focus, Harvard Pilgrim, Health Connecticut, Health Direct, Health New England, Healthy Connecticut, HMC/Northeast Healthcare, Medspan Commercial, Medspan Medicare, Multiplan, Northeast Health Direct, One Health Plan/Great-West Healthcare, Oxford Health Plans, Prime Health Services, Private Health Care Systems, Inc., Senior Whole Health, United Healthcare, WellCare of Connecticut, Inc.

*This information is subject to change at any time. Please check with your insurance provider before scheduling your appointment or receiving services to confirm they are a participating member of the Hartford HealthCare network.


MidState Medical Center


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