Reconstruction is an option for women following a Masectomy
Research from the University of Michigan Medical Centre shows that only a small percentage of American women choose reconstructive surgery following a mastectomy. It suggests that not enough women are being educated on the options surrounding the breast removal procedure which can be carried out on women with breast cancer.
In this country, patients can learn about the health benefits and problems that could be a consequence. Charities such as the Macmillan Cancer Support offer patients advice in the area.
In the modern day surgical techniques have improved a lot over the years and as a result, surgeons at the University of Michigan have found the results of the study surprising.
Speaking on an online form hosted by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, Anne Alderman said that women are not being educated about these options.
In the UK, women can consult their surgeon before a masectomy concerning reconstructive surgery, which involves a number of different forms. Firstly implants used in breast enlargement surgeries. Secondly ‘tissue flap construction’ in which skin and fat from the lower abdomen is grafted onto the breast area via a tunnel through the body to the chest, and thirdly free flap reconstruction involving the same thing but by separating the original tissue through microsurgery. The use of these three techniques depend on various factors.
Breast related surgeries are actually on the increase in the United Kingdom with Breast enlargements rising to nearly 6,500 in the last year. In the US, breast lifts and breast lift/enlargement combination surgeries also rose.
If true, the findings that women might not be getting reconstructive surgeries could be due to a number of factors. The study did not show how medical considerations affected the results, as some women might not have been correct candidates for the operation.
The options will depend on the amount of the breast removed in a masectomy, the healthiness of the tissue involved and whether radiotherapy has been used in the treatment. Of course the choice of the women could also be playing a role.
Whatever the case, surgeons urge patients in the UK to consult doctors or surgeons before making decisions in this area.
Sources: USA Today and News Leader Missouri