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Treatment

Treatment

Chapter: 6 - Treatment

Subchapter: 4 - Breast Reconstruction

Following a mastectomy, you have options to help you become comfortable with the changes in your body. They are all options, with benefits to each approach. What is best for you and your body may not be what is best for another woman.

If you are considering breast reconstruction, you should speak with your medical team before the mastectomy, even if you plan to have your reconstruction later on.

Reconstruction Methods
There are a few of options for breast reconstruction, and which one you use will depend on your age, body type, and treatment plan.

Implants
One possibility is to have breast implants. The breast is filled with silicone sacs of saline or silicone gel.

TRAM Flap, Latissimus Flap, or Gluteal Flap
An alternative solution is to use tissue the surgeon removes from another part of your body, like the belly (TRAM), back (latissimus), or buttocks (gluteal). The surgeon sculpts this tissue into the shape of your breast.

Surgical Summary
In addition to reconstructing the breast, the surgeon can add a nipple, change the shape or size of the reconstructed breast, and operate on the opposite breast as well for a better match. The plastic surgeon will be able to discuss with you the benefits and risks of each procedure, and help you decide what will make you feel the most natural.

Alternative to Breast Reconstruction
One alternative to breast reconstruction is a removable prosthetic breast that is worn in the bra. This will preserve the shape and look of the breast without the surgical procedures.

Summary
Whether you undergo breast reconstruction, wear a prosthetic breast, or choose to embrace the changes you have experienced, you should make a decision that is right for you. The goal is to prevent the discomfort of change, while enabling you to accept what has occurred and continue on with your life.

Related Questions

  • Thumb avatar default

    Can you get breast cancer if you have breast implants?

    Perguntado por anonimamente

    Family Member or Loved One
    over 3 years 2 answers
    • Catherine Nodurft Profile
      anonimamente
      Family Member or Loved One

      Yes, but having implants makes it more difficult to detect lumps when performing a self-exam.

      Comentário
    • Sheryl Love Profile
      anonimamente
      Stage 2A Patient

      Yes. I was diagnosed October 26th with Invasive Ductal Carcinoma. My surgery is November 28th. Plan A right now is a lumpectomy and radiation and estrogen therapy. I had breast augmentation in 2008.

      Comentário
  • Jennifer Jones Profile

    I'm 3 days post-op and I have almost no pain but I'm tired. Is this normal?

    Asked by anonymous

    Patient
    about 2 years 10 answers
    • View all 10 answers
    • Erin Timlin Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2011

      Yes, anesthesia is part of it but you've also had major surgery (really major if you had mastectomy) so your body is wiped out.

      Comment
    • cindy stephenson Profile
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      Yep- I was tired for a few weeks. Just rest and eat alot of protein and push fluids.

      Comment
  • Josephine Mannarino Profile

    I am 70 years old and diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer and 1 lymp node involvement. Will my treatment be agressive?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    about 2 years 3 answers
    • Sharon Danielson Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2007

      Hi Josephine, I, too, had the same diagnosis. Each and every woman's breast cancer treatment depends on the type of breast cancer, the woman's age, stage, aggressiveness of the cells, surgery chosen, and the woman desires. Some women would choose to have every bit of treatment available to...

      more

      Hi Josephine, I, too, had the same diagnosis. Each and every woman's breast cancer treatment depends on the type of breast cancer, the woman's age, stage, aggressiveness of the cells, surgery chosen, and the woman desires. Some women would choose to have every bit of treatment available to her even if the odds of benefit are very small. My treatment, because of all the above factors was not, what I would call particularly aggressive. I had a mastectomy, 4 rounds of chemotherapy and 5 years of hormone therapy. I have very close and watchful appointments with my oncologist, an annual mammogram, and an annual MRI. I was diagnosed at 59 with invasive ductal carcinoma and one microscopic involvment of a lymph node. I can't really say how aggressive your treatment will be because there are several pieces of the diagnostic puzzle missing. It sounds like your breast cancer was caught at an early stage. If you have questions about your treatment plan... do not hesitate to get a second opinion. You will be ok, and come through this all in fine shape. Hang in there Josephine.... we, on this board are always here for each other. Blessings to you and take care, Sharon

      Comment
    • Marianne R. Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2011

      Your doctors will decide your treatment plan. God Bless you on your journey.

      Comment
  • joan b Profile

    i had breast implants prior to having cancer. I had the cancer removed 9 months ago and my breast has pain still, any suggestions?

    Asked by anonymous

    Survivor since 2013
    7 months 4 answers
    • View all 4 answers
    • Marianne Robertson Profile
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      Just to add to what Sharon said assming everything is ok ask the Doctor for some PT it saved me

      Comment
    • Sharon Danielson Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2007

      You need to go back to your oncologist. Have you had regular checks since your treatment? First thing tomorrow, make an appointment with your doctor. Your pain can be from lots of reasons other than cancer. Take care.

      Comment

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