Posted by ellynd
Immediately after my doctor told me I had breast cancer, I told him I was having a bilateral mastectomy. There was no doubt in my mind that on drop of cancer meant that both my breasts were going. This was before I even knew about my genetic mutation. As soon as I got through all the scary screening (bone scan, chest x-ray, blood work), I started focusing on breast doctors and plastic surgeons. I made my decision pretty quickly and was ready to go. My path was clearly defined. I would have the mastectomy, have expanders put in place, go through several months of expanding and ultimately exchange the expanders for my implants.
While I knew there were several other breast reconstruction options, none of these were an option for me and I didn’t even bother reading or discussing any of them. I made up my mind and had the surgery. So this weekend was a completely eye-opening experience as I talked to women about their DIEPS, GAPS, one-step with Alloderm and their nipple sparing mastectomies. I’m sure there’s others that I’ve missed so feel free to chime in if I’m missing something. Not only did I hear about them, I got to see them and even touch them. From 8p-11p each night in the show and tell suite reserved for women only, women lifted their shirts and discussed their experiences. Choosing a mastectomy is a tough and emotional journey—especially for previvors—who haven’t had cancer and it’s so wonderful that FORCE provides this avenue for women to share their experiences, see the results and get answers to their questions first-hand.