I am trying to decide whether to have surgery to create symmetry after a lumpectomy and breast cancer radiation. There is not a huge difference when dressed, but it is quite noticeable when undressed. Sooooo ... I am trying to decide if it is worth the risk. I would appreciate any help looking at the pros and cons. Thanks.
Dear Curious, I've had 10 breast cancer surgeries and 8 rounds of chemo. The best advice I can offer you is to do what makes you feel comfortable in your own skin. Breast cancer surgery often contributes to difficulties regarding self-image. Symmetry was important to me, so I understand where you're coming from. Understand you still may not have perfection or symmetry. Mine is not perfect, but I'm glad I had it done.
You certainly have the option... Symmetry procedures can include surgeries on the breast that had the lumpectomy and also on the other "good" breast. There are potentially several options depending on your breasts, how they differ and your goals (eg breast lift/breast reduction/fat grafting [lipofilling]).
If this is something that you'd like to consider further, I recommend a consultation with a plastic surgeon experienced in breast reconstruction. You'll only truly know your options after a formal evaluation.
I also have to echo Brenda's comments... perfect symmetry is always the patient's and plastic surgeon's goal but only really consider going ahead with more surgery if you know you'd be content with "much better" symmetry (which is a more realistic goal). Remember also, no woman is truly symmetric to begin with.
I totally agree with Dr. C's remarks. Consulting with a plastic surgeon who specializes in breast reconstruction may give you valuable information about what you, specifically, might be able to achieve with further surgery. Once you have more information tailored to your your specific situation, you will be able to determine if your goals can be met.
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