News

Study explores women's concerns about breast reconstruction

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Undergoing a mastectomy is hard enough without having to think about what comes next. However, when breast cancer survivors recover their health sufficiently, many of them begin to consider the possibility of having a breast reconstruction operation.

A survey of such women recently appeared in the Journal of Breast Cancer. Its authors determined that while many individuals express anxieties over the way their new breasts will look or what people might think of them, the most commonly cited reason not to get the surgery was finances.

Nearly 60 percent of the respondents, all of whom were women who had undergone a mastectomy, said that the primary reason they had not yet had a breast reconstruction was the cost of the surgery.

The next most common impediment was anxiety about physical complications, which 47 percent of women expressed.

Ultimately, even though the majority of respondents had early concerns about their physical appearance and the risk of cancer recurrence, almost half decided that they would have a breast reconstruction in the near future.

Discussing the physical effects of a breast reconstruction is something women should do with their physician, who will explain the constraints the surgery may initially put on range of motion and muscle use, according to the National Cancer Institute.

Chung IY et al. Survey of Psychosocial Problems Facing Breast Cancer Survivors after Undergoing a Mastectomy and Their Awareness of Breast Reconstruction. J Breast Cancer. Feb 2011. 14(Suppl 1), S70- S76. http://synapse.koreamed.org/DOIx.php?id=10.4048/jbc.2011.14.S.S70 Accessed May 12, 2011.

Preventive Mastectomy. National Cancer Institute. http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Therapy/preventivemastectomy Accessed May 12, 2011.

Extract: Undergoing a mastectomy is hard enough without having to think about what comes next. However, when breast cancer survivors recover their health sufficiently, many of them begin to consider the possibility of having a breast reconstruction operation.

© Mentor Worldwide LLC June 2011 1105056

This article summary is provided for your reference only and may not represent the views of Mentor Worldwide LLC.