Breast reconstruction surgery (creating a new breast or breasts) after breast cancer is a very personal choice. While not all women choose to have reconstruction, most will at least have some questions about it. Here are some good questions to ask your doctor.
But first one very important tip: If possible, please bring someone with you to your appointment. You will be hearing a lot of new information. A second set of ears and someone to take notes will be very helpful. If you don’t have someone to go with you, please contact Forge’s Client Services Coordinator, Janet Dees, at (205) 990-5367 or [email protected]. She may be able to match you with a peer mentor who has had breast cancer, too, and can go with you to your appointment.
- What are my reconstruction options? What type do you suggest?
- When should I have reconstruction – now or later? Why?
- What are the short and long-term effects of the different types of reconstruction?
- What are the risks or side effects?
- How many surgeries will I need?
- How long is each surgery? How long will I be in the hospital?
- How long will it take for me to heal?
- How will my reconstructed breast look and feel? How will it compare with my other breast? Will I need surgery on the other breast?
- Are you a board certified plastic surgeon? May I see pictures of reconstructive surgeries that you have done?
- If my breast cancer came back, how would I know? What should I look for?
- After reconstruction, will I need a yearly mammogram?
- If I choose not to have reconstruction, what are my options? Can I use a breast prosthesis?
- Where can I buy them? Will insurance pay for them?