June 2008: Diagnosis> DCIS (ductal carcinoma in situ).
Recommendation > partial mastectomy of right breast with 6 weeks of radiation and 5 years of medication.
As a large busted woman (38 DD+)in my late 40's, this unexpected news left me looking for the silver lining in this otherwise gloomy cloud. I found it at the office of Dr C. Both, my cancer surgeon, Dr. Melvin Silverstein, and Dr C believe that the most effective approach to this procedure was to remove the cancer, and perform the reconstruction at the same time, leaving me (the patient) with a more esthetically pleasing result. Imagine if you will the difficulty of having one breast size DD+ and the other a "perky" B cup, and having to live with that for almost a year while healing, doing radiation treatments etc.
Their reconstruction at the same time as the surgical mastectomy produced multiple benefits. From my perspective the most important benefit was the fact that my post surgical appearance was a new bust line that was not unsightly. This allowed me the confidence to take a positive approach toward my subsequent radiation treatments, staying focused on healing. Dr Silverstein and Dr C both believe that a patient's emotional wellness is as important as their physical wellness.
As a breast cancer survivor, and the proud new owner of some great looking reconstructed breasts, I could not be happier with my outcome. I thank them both for everything they have done for me, and as I tell my girlfriends, "my fantastic new boobies are the unexpected DCIS gift with purchase"