The Margie Petersen Breast Center

The Margie Petersen Breast Center at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, California is home to the John Wayne Cancer Institute, where breast cancer research and clinical trials result in the most advanced breast cancer care. 

Our breast services include:

  • Nurse navigators for patient education, guidance and support
  • Geneticists focused on breast cancer risk assessment and prevention
  • Oncology nutrition specialists
  • Integrative medicine and complementary therapies including acupuncture, massage and yoga
  • Advanced breast imaging services
  • Leading-edge surgical options and non-surgical therapies for breast cancer, including sentinel node biopsy, targeted radiation, and cryoablation

A comprehensive, team approach
This year, more than 2,500 patients will benefit from advanced breast cancer care from our multi-disciplinary team of physicians, surgeons and health care professionals.  At our breast center, surgeons who lead breast cancer research and clinical trials guide and follow their patient’s complete care from the moment of diagnosis to the end of treatment. Once treatment has ended, patients are assisted with the transition back into their normal lives and followed closely thereafter. Our patients find comfort and understanding from the moment they walk into the breast center, where they are embraced as a member of the Providence Saint John’s family. Our academic medicine teamed with a highly-personalized healing environment is a perfect pair for our patients.

Quick appointments and same-day results for peace of mind
Early detection and prevention are the keys to effectively battling breast cancer. Either through a screening mammogram or perhaps a breast self-exam, finding a breast lump can be unsettling and concerning for both women and men alike. Thankfully, most mammographic calcifications and painful breast lumps are not cancer, which is why we offer our patients the peace of mind that comes with securing a quick appointment and a complete work-up on the day they arrive for care. Based on your condition, you can receive an exam, bedside ultrasound, mammogram, or biopsy and know the results before you leave. Our cancer center has renowned breast surgeons and pathologists on-site.

Personalized breast cancer treatment and care
Should you receive a diagnosis of cancer, your breast surgeon and caregiving team will work together to prepare a personalized care plan to provide you with the best options for treatment, taking into consideration your breast cancer, your health and your wishes. It is important to understand that breast cancer is not one cancer, it is a heterogeneous disease, and an option that might be right for one person may not be right for you.

Our Services

You’ll receive a holistic approach to your care. We also provide additional integrative services for each patient as a gift from the many individuals who graciously donate to our breast center.

  • Patient (nurse) navigator. Your point person, educator and resource throughout your course of care and beyond.
  • Geneticist. Focused on cancer-risk assessment and prevention.
  • Oncology nutrition specialist.
  • Integrative services – acupuncture, massage, yoga, stress reduction and immune system development.
  • Advanced imaging services from fellowship-trained breast radiologists.
  • Leading-edge surgical intervention, including sentinel node biopsy.
  • The latest in radiation therapy technology, including targeted radiation which leads to a shorter treatment course.
  • Innovative new therapies, such as cryoablation.
  • Breast surgeons who are also faculty at the John Wayne Cancer Institute.
  • Access to the latest research and clinical trials focused on improving cancer care and eliminating cancer.

You will receive our commitment to your complete well-being. Whether screening, diagnosis or treatment, you will have the most trusted and experienced team of caregivers at your side through every moment of your care.

Find out your cancer risk

This brief questionnaire will help you determine whether you should be further evaluated for either Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer syndrome or Lynch syndrome. 

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Screening Guidelines Packet

Download our physician-recommended, age-appropriate screening guidelines for women. All women are encouraged to read these guidelines and ask their physician which screening tests are appropriate for them.

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Latest News

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  • Facing Breast Cancer with Courage

    Providence is are at the forefront with breast cancer research, treatment and even innovative healing strategies. As we move forward, we see a future of far more community outreach and patient-oriented research.

    Read more
  • The Information Contained in your Genes

    At least 10% of breast cancers are hereditary; they arise because of alterations in our genes that are passed down through families and raise the risk of cancer. In the era of personalized medicine, genetic testing can empower individuals by giving them the information they need to discover hereditary risks and learn what they can do to catch cancer early—or even stop it from ever developing.

    Read more
  • Study Finds Bacteria May Protect Against Breast Cancer

    A groundbreaking study by a John Wayne Cancer Institute research team is focusing on the role of bacteria in breast cancer prevention.

    Read more
  • Facing Breast Cancer with Courage

    Providence is are at the forefront with breast cancer research, treatment and even innovative healing strategies. As we move forward, we see a future of far more community outreach and patient-oriented research.

    Read more
  • The Information Contained in your Genes

    At least 10% of breast cancers are hereditary; they arise because of alterations in our genes that are passed down through families and raise the risk of cancer. In the era of personalized medicine, genetic testing can empower individuals by giving them the information they need to discover hereditary risks and learn what they can do to catch cancer early—or even stop it from ever developing.

    Read more
  • Study Finds Bacteria May Protect Against Breast Cancer

    A groundbreaking study by a John Wayne Cancer Institute research team is focusing on the role of bacteria in breast cancer prevention.

    Read more