After Mastectomy, Focusing on How Reconstructed Breasts Feel to the Patient, Rather Than To Others, is the Next Frontier

This report from the New York Times exposes an issue of increasing concern to breast cancer patients given available treatment options of oncoplastic breast reconstruction, including nipple sparing mastectomy.

“Our focus has been on what women look like,” said Dr. Andrea L. Pusic, a plastic surgeon at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center who specializes in breast reconstruction and studies patients’ quality of life after breast surgery. “What it feels like to the woman has been a kind of blind spot in breast surgery. That’s the next frontier.”

Says Victoria Pitts-Taylor, a professor and the head of feminist, gender and sexuality studies at Wesleyan University:

The focus on how breasts look and feel to other people, rather than how they feel to the patient, speaks to the fact that women are still largely judged by their appearance.

“There’s such a strong cultural gaze at women’s breasts,” Dr. Pitts-Taylor said. “It does raise the question: Who is breast reconstruction for?”

Learn the story of Dane McCree, 31, a store manager in Grand Junction, Colo., who is raising two daughters on her own, and the experiences of other women who have undergone breast reconstruction and the medical community’s turn of focus on breast feel for patients themselves, in the New York Times.

This entry was posted in Breast Cancer Surgery, Doctor-Patient Relationship, Emotional Reconstruction®, Information Strength, Nipple-Sparing Mastectomy, Oncoplastic Reconstruction, We Live You®: The Latest and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.