Wednesday, September 24, 2014
BRA Breast cancer awareness day is October 15th
October is breast cancer awareness month. The 15th of October is breast cancer reconstruction awareness day (BRA). One in eight women will have breast cancer yet only 25% of the women with cancer are offered breast reconstruction options with their cancer diagnosis. This number is even smaller in lower socioeconomic areas.
Reconstruction of a breast lost to cancer is covered by all insurance. This is assured by a federal law in 1998. (http://www.plasticsurgery.org/reconstructive-procedures/breast-reconstruction/breast-reconstruction-resources/1998-federal-breast-reconstruction-law.html). Included in this law is surgery on the opposite breast to match the reconstructed breast and revisions of the breast reconstruction. Implant reconstructions as well as natural tissue reconstructions change as you age. If your breast reconstruction is uncomfortable or painful and if surgery can improve these symptoms then it is a covered service.
Breast reconstruction can be started at the same time as the mastectomy or it can be started after you are healed. There are pros and cons to both immediate and delayed reconstruction. A visit to the Plastic surgeon should be included in your planning of treatment. During this visit all options will be explained to you.
Therapy to help improve range of motion and massage to soften the area of surgical scarring is often also covered in the period after surgery.
Help spread the word to family and friends that may benefit from this information.
You can call my office for more information as well.
Ralph M. Rosato, MD
Board certified Plastic Surgeon