Dr. Tan Yah Yuen

General Surgery

Credentials MBBS, FRCS(Edin), FRCS(Glasg), FRCSEd(Gen), FAMS, GDipHML
Language English, Mandarin Chinese, Hokkien Dialect

Dr Tan Yah Yuen is a breast surgeon practising at Mount Elizabeth Hospital, Singapore. She specialises in treating all breast disorders including breast lumps, nipple discharge, and breast cancer, with an expertise in minimally invasive breast surgery, including ultrasound guided vacuum assisted needle biopsies.

Upon her graduation from the National University of Singapore, she underwent basic training and then completed specialty training in general surgery. Through the Health Manpower Development Plan (HMDP) Award, she attended a 1-year fellowship programme at the University of California, San Francisco in 2004 and honed her skills in breast and endocrine surgery. She was inducted as a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh in 2003 as well as of the Academy of Medicine of Singapore (General Surgery) in 2005.

Before establishing her private practice, Dr Tan was a senior consultant at the Breast Surgery Department at KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital. During her tenure, she pioneered the Sentinel Lymph Node Programme for early breast cancer using dual radionuclide and blue dye technique. She had set up the same programme in Tan Tock Seng Hospital prior to that. This procedure is now the standard of care for women with early breast cancer.

Research is an aspect of medicine that Dr Tan likes to set aside time for. Most recently, she was the principal investigator of a 3-year trial which studied the usefulness of mammary ductoscopy in the diagnosis of abnormal nipple discharge and breast cancer.

Dr Tan’s interest in the field of breast surgery extends beyond the hospital and her patients. She is currently a member of the International Society of Surgeons and Breast Surgery International. She also has various publications to her name such as the World Journal of Surgery and the Annals of Surgical Oncology. A passion for public education has also led her to give numerous talks to increase awareness of breast cancer in the community. But ultimately, service to her patients is what Dr Tan values most. For her dedication, she has been awarded several awards for service excellence, including the Excellent Service Award (Star) by Spring Singapore in 2009 and the KKH CEO Heart Award in 2008.

  • Health Manpower Development Plan Award, 2004
  • Spring Singapore Excellent Service Award (EXSA) Silver Award, 2007
  • Kandang Kerbau Women’s & Children’s Hospital CEO Heart Award, 2008
  • Spring Singapore Excellent Service Award (EXSA) Gold Award, 2008
  • Spring Singapore Excellent Service Award (EXSA) Star Award, 2009


Minimally Invasive Breast Biopsy

Breast cancer is now the most common cancer among women in many countries. The incidence of breast cancer is rising and this has been attributed to a combination of multiple factors including modernization of society, changing lifestyles, women bearing children...

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