Jun 13, 2018 08:30AM - edited Jun 13, 2018 08:33AM by Lula73
so... lumpectomy & mastectomy have similar survival rates (keeping in mind that the survival stats are based on death from all causes, not just BC), HOWEVER, lumpectomy has higher recurrence rates. And lumpectomy comes with rads that can and dies often cause tissue damage and affects healing from surgery.
They say that if cancer is only in 1 breast that it does not up the chances of cancer developing in the other breast. HOWEVER, the remaining breast will need to be intensively monitored every 6 months with mammos and mri. The logical question then is, “Why intensive monitoring if no risk increase?" Many women do not want the stress of imaging every 6 months, would prefer to lessen the odds if cancer developing in the other breast below that of the overall national average seeing as how they are currently finding themselves on the wrong side of the odds, they may think it would be odd to have different feeling from one breast to the other and would prefer them to be the same, and they would like symmetry. And so many opt for bilateral mx vs uni. At the end of the day, it is you that lives with the decision whether it turns out good, bad or indifferent. Don't let people who don't have to live with the outcome of the decision dictate, make, or significantly influence the decision.
Best advice I can give is to go with the option that leaves YOU with a feeling of peace.
Since you mentioned you're 36 and care about how your breasts look and feel, have you looked into natural tissue reconstruction instead of implants? Recon can be done at time of mx without tissue expanders and the result is natural looking and feeling breasts - natural feeling to you from the inside and from the outside if you or someone else touches them. They take tissue from your tummy or hips and build breasts out of it. So you get new breasts at time of mx + a tummy tuck or butt lift. These are muscle sparing surgeries. If you have any questions about this type of recon, I'm happy to answer them. And yes, you can cancel your current surgery date and reschedule elsewhere if you so desire. Most women go 4-10 weeks from diagnosis to surgery.
Here's a link to one of the top centers that women travel from all over the country to for their mx and/orbreast recon surgery. They only focus on breast recon-no facelifts, breast augmentations, or other procedures unless they come along with restoring your body to asclose to the pre-surgical state as possible. The before & after photos tell their outcome story quite well (I'm living proof) and if nothing else, the video on the main page titled, “I Wish I Knew..." is a very informative one no matter the type of recon you're planning and is worth the time to watch.
I hope this helps!