We met a 50 year old woman from Massachusetts who was just diagnosed with a recurrence of breast cancer.
She originally had a lumpectomy and now is considering a mastectomy with no reconstruction or the tram flap surgery. She was struggling with her decision and wanted to talk to some people who had tried both options.
We paired her up with two different women– one who chose not to have reconstruction, and is doing great, and another woman in Illinois who had the tram flap surgery. All 3 women were about the same age and had very similar situations…same stage, same initial treatment plan, etc. The pair up will allow the fighter to evaluate both options through understanding the experiences of both women and can gain support as she continues on with a decision!
About Tram Flap Surgery
Tram flap surgery works by moving a small amount of skin, fat, and muscle from the abdomen up to the breast area. The move is done surgically and through a small opening in the body and is quite unlike a transplant or other surgery that takes parts of skin off of the body and grafts it onto another. The tissue that has been moved is then molded into the shape of a natural breast. Blood vessels are reattached to the area so that it can grow and live like normal tissue.
The surgery results in a breast made out of the patient’s own body, so that there is a diminished risk of bodily rejection and little problem in coloration problems. The breasts are shaped in similar forms to one another. Since they are made of actual living tissue rather than some artificial device, the breasts feel normal to the touch.