There’s no better time than right now to join the fight against breast cancer, as October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. And, did you know that 1 in every 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lives? BRA Day USA ( www.BraDayUSA.org) celebrates its 3rd anniversary on October 17th and continues to lead the charge to promote education, awareness and access to breast reconstruction following mastectomy or lumpectomy.
More and more women are choosing to have breast reconstruction after a mastectomy; while for others, a prosthesis is the preferred option.
“We want to bring the topic of breast reconstruction into the larger breast cancer dialogue,” says American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) President Dr. Malcolm Roth.
The statistics are staggering: seven out of 10 women eligible for breast reconstruction, following cancer surgery, are not being informed of their options. And, according to the Mayo Clinic:
- Eighty-nine percent of women want to see what breast reconstruction surgery results would look like before undergoing treatment.
- Less than a quarter (23 percent) of women know the wide range of breast reconstruction options available.
- Only 22 percent of women are familiar with the quality of outcomes that can be expected.
“Letting women know their reconstruction options before or at the time of diagnosis is critical to improving life after breast cancer,” Roth says.
Kim Sport, a breast cancer survivor and reconstruction patient says, “It was very, very important to share my experience with other women, because I didn’t want them to just look at a photo.” Sport regularly meets with breast cancer support groups to “show and tell” about her experience.
Is Breast Reconstruction Right For You?
Every survivor needs to consider her individual preferences and circumstances. These tips can help:
- Research your options
- Weigh the risks and benefits
- Talk with your doctor
- Know your rights under the Women’s Health and Cancer Rights Act of 1998
For more information, call 1-800-IM-AWARE (1-800-462-9273). It’s time to “close the loop” on breast cancer!
“Living well…one healthy step at a time”