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All TopicsForum: Living Without Reconstruction After a Mastectomy → Topic: Bras and breast forms you love

Topic: Bras and breast forms you love

Forum: Living Without Reconstruction After a Mastectomy — Discuss prostheses, swimsuits, bras, and other options for women not having reconstruction or waiting for reconstruction.

Posted on: Jul 15, 2008 04:13PM

Erica wrote:

It's been a while since I've posted any new options for breast forms or bras on my BreastFree website. I'm hoping some of you have found bras and forms you love and would be willing to share the information. I regretfully had to remove my recommendation for the Amoena Tria Plus contact form from my site, since it's being discontinued. I'd love to find a number of other options to take its place.

I've tended to focus on forms that are particularly comfortable, silicone or otherwise. I haven't specifically recommended any of the "typical" all-silicone forms, since each woman needs to find the size and shape that fits her best. But I would be very interested in hearing if any of the light-weight versions are particularly comfortable. Has anyone tried the Amoena Natura Light, which has a new kind of gel backing that's supposed to remain cooler? Someone told me the effect only lasts for a half hour or so, but I'd love to hear your experiences.

I'd also be interested if you've found a form, even if it's a "typical" all-silicone form, that you really love--perhaps because of a particularly pleasing shape, or excellent projection, or notably huggable softness. For example, does anyone have a "Silk" form from TruLife? They're advertised as feeling exceptionally nice. And are there any other good contact forms aside from those still made by Amoena?

I would also be very interested in bras or breast forms that solve specific problems. For example, if your remaining breast is very large, what works well as far as a prosthesis for the other side? Other issues might be finding forms and bras that accomodate chest pain or sensitivity. And breast forms and bras that work well for those with breast or truncal lymphedema.

Any other recommendations would be welcome, too--for camisoles, swimsuits, even great tops.

Thanks!

Barbara 

BreastFree.org (breastfree.org); BreastFree Blog (breastfree.blogspot.com); Twitter @BreastFree
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Posts 121 - 150 (179 total)

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Feb 3, 2009 09:14PM GrandmaWolf wrote:

Boob Wardrobe...boobs on eBay.  If someone told us this years ago we wouldn't have believed them. 

Well you gave me an idea, so I'm off to eBay.

D

Dakota Wolf
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Feb 4, 2009 12:10AM Sher wrote:

Curious, so I just went to ebay myself and searched for "breast forms".  Gosh, what you don't find there!  I'd had this question about why they make contact silicone breast forms, but don't make contact foam forms which would be way lighter.  My biggest problem with foam forms is that they move around so much.  But on ebay they advertise "It Stays"for securing forms directly to the skin.  I even have a bottle of the stuff that I got along with an old LE sleeve, but never thought of using it on  breast forms.  Anybody have any success using this with foam or latex forms?

Dx 8/28/2000, IDC, <1cm, Stage 1b, Grade 3, ER/PR-, HER2-
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Feb 4, 2009 11:40AM carol1949 wrote:

Sher, My concern with using an adhesive w foam, would be that it could break down the foam and/or disintigrate it.???  I sure don't know, but that was my first thought.  I wonder about double sided tape?

Also, are you using weighted foam forms?

Dx 4/4/2008, IDC, 6cm+, Stage IIIB, ER+, HER2-
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Feb 4, 2009 12:00PM carol1949 wrote:

WOW!!!  Once again, in my research I am very intigued in the "storefronts" that are steering me away from Amoena!

The last lady I called said, they are too expensive and don't have as good warranties as Classique, Almost Yu, and Nearly Me!

Dx 4/4/2008, IDC, 6cm+, Stage IIIB, ER+, HER2-
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Feb 4, 2009 12:21PM , edited Feb 4, 2009 01:31PM by Erica

carol 1949,

I think it all depends on what a particular store carries. The woman you spoke with may sincerely believe what she said. But I've heard the opposite as well. An Amoena rep told me that Nearly Me wasn't  a very well-made form, for example, though I haven't heard any complaints from users about them breaking down.

I think it's a good idea to try on forms by a number of different manufacturers, if possible. They all have different silicone formulations, which give them a different feel. For example, I love the feel of the Airway forms (now being marketed as Anita forms, I believe)--they feel the most lifelike to me. But you might feel differently. After my surgery, when I was doing lots of research, I was very interested in the ABC forms. They are nice forms, but when I tried them on, I just didn't like the feel of them on me. And size and shape matter, too--each company makes a number of different sizes and shapes and some will fit you better than others.

The good news is that there are lots of options out there. The bad news is that, for me at least, lots of trial and error is necessary to find what works best. Over time, I've purchased several types of forms. I wish I had found one perfect one, but the truth is that sometimes one works better than another with a particular bra or with a particular top. I think it's also good for my chest to mix and match. When I travel, I take my Amoena 126 Leisure forms to wear for exercise in my Still You Tank Top and my Airway (now Anita) Tritex Triangle forms, which can be worn in pocketed or unpocketed bras, since they have a soft microfiber back.

Good luck in your research! 

BreastFree.org (breastfree.org); BreastFree Blog (breastfree.blogspot.com); Twitter @BreastFree
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Feb 4, 2009 12:33PM carol1949 wrote:

Thanks a Million, Barbara, (aka) Erica!! Kiss
Dx 4/4/2008, IDC, 6cm+, Stage IIIB, ER+, HER2-
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Feb 4, 2009 07:24PM Sher wrote:

Carol1949, no on the weighted forms - just have Amoena 126 Leisure.  I thought to try a weighted foam form, but wasn't sure how much difference they would be to the lightest silicone forms.  What is the double sided tape..........something used for clothing? 

It would make sense to me that someone should make an almost weightless foam form with a contact back of some sort.  Maybe with an outer skin like the silicone forms, but foam inside so it could be washed/scrubbed, etc. 

Dx 8/28/2000, IDC, <1cm, Stage 1b, Grade 3, ER/PR-, HER2-
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Feb 4, 2009 09:50PM carol1949 wrote:

Sher, there is double stick tape that is sold even by Victoria's secret, but also  by some of the mastecomy sites.

For some reason, I am not finding a lot of common sense in this whole search!! lol

It still troubles me that my insurance will pay thousands of dollars for me to have recon, but only 50% of a fake boob!

Dx 4/4/2008, IDC, 6cm+, Stage IIIB, ER+, HER2-
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Feb 5, 2009 03:43PM Texgirl wrote:

I received a SPANX bra for Xmas from my daughter...since my reconstruction, I wear only no wire bras and this one is so supportive I think you could just slide your prosthesis inside and it would stay w/o difficulty...I still haven't seen them in store but this one was found on their website...

Also JC Penney has no wire  bras Ambrielle that are very comfortable ..I like them better than VS.

Dx 2/8/2005, IDC, 6cm+, Stage IIIC, Grade 2, 22/22 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Feb 6, 2009 06:13AM kerry32 wrote:

Barbara - the Anita Tritex forms you say you can wear in a regular bra - is that due to the shape being triangular - I would love something i could wear in a regular bra because my current ones - ABC and I have Amoena Natura don't really fit into the cup - thanks

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Feb 6, 2009 11:34AM , edited Feb 6, 2009 11:35AM by Erica

kerry32,

They are triangular, but what makes them so comfortable is that they have a soft microfiber backing. Airway (now owned by Anita) describes it as "velvet soft" and it really is very soft and comfy. The Airway forms run a little bigger than Amoena or ABC. I wear a size 3 in Amoena but a size 2 in the Airway. I wear my size 2s in a little Maidenform bralette and in an Airway bra that's designed especially for these forms. Here's a link to a picture of the breast forms: http://www.womanspersonalhealth.com/products/190/Tritex-Triangular-Breast-Form.htm. And here's a link to the bra: http://www.womanspersonalhealth.com/products/34/Airway-Mastectomy-Bra-Model-5452.htm.The bra has a partial pocket, so that it stays put. I find it exceptionally comfortable and the lace across the top keeps it from gapping. I can also wear the forms in any pocketed bra and in other regular bras.

Both these products are among those I recommend on BreastFree.org

BreastFree.org (breastfree.org); BreastFree Blog (breastfree.blogspot.com); Twitter @BreastFree
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Feb 6, 2009 02:01PM anianiau wrote:

How comfortable is the Tritex in hot, humid weather?

Dx 10/20/2008, DCIS, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/8 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2+
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Feb 6, 2009 05:29PM Erica wrote:

I live in warm weather year round and find it great!

BreastFree.org (breastfree.org); BreastFree Blog (breastfree.blogspot.com); Twitter @BreastFree
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Feb 9, 2009 09:42PM carol1949 wrote:

The information from ABC contniues to come in!  Today, I got an email from the local rep who again insisted that the bra is more important than the form.  The weight issue is something they seem to want to stay away from and also insist that for instance not all size 7's are equal!

I did learn, however that the "massage" form was tried on only about 12 people prior to being launched which seems a little strange! So, she basically said with that one, only time will tell!

Just thought I would share that tidbit!

Dx 4/4/2008, IDC, 6cm+, Stage IIIB, ER+, HER2-
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Feb 9, 2009 10:05PM GrandmaWolf wrote:

I will, based on 1st hand experience agree not all size 7's are equal.  It is maddening that they are not.  Like women's clothing, what the size actually is seems to be only in comparison to other sizes by the same manufacture.   Amoena size 5's that I tried are smaller than the 5's of ABC.

Now lets throw in size, and model style....it's enough to turn another wise reasonable woman into an irrational shrew right there in the fitting room.

I do know that some forms don't work as well with my favorite bra's, so I am left with the choice, of going with the form or the bra.

 Being bilateral, I have a lot of latitude for choice, and because of all the hassle to get it right, I am slowly easing myself into going flat more and more.  I kiddingly refer to it as my Audrey Hepburn look.

 GrandmaWolf aka Dakota

Dakota Wolf
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Feb 9, 2009 10:34PM carol1949 wrote:

Stunning, Dahling, Stunning!  lol

Seriously, I do have a question.  The one "fitter" I spoke with told me that I will never be able to wear a soft cup bra... actually she said, "no one can successfully"  as the breast form sags too much leaving puckers or wrinkles on the top part of the bra.

I am a 36 D bra, normally, and my "real" boob fits it fine, but the triangle form she had me try... actually looked smaller than my real breast.

Has anyone had this happen?

Dx 4/4/2008, IDC, 6cm+, Stage IIIB, ER+, HER2-
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Feb 10, 2009 04:20PM angeljoy wrote:

Carol,

I'm kind of new at this as I've only had my prosthesis a few weeks but so far I am am able to wear some of my old "soft cup bras" with both my regular form and my weighted leisure form. I wear a 36C or a 36D in some mastectomy bras. I don't know what she meant by soft cups, but I'm talking about bras made out of stretchy soft, tshirt-type fabric and microfiber ones too. No linings or pockets or anything. And I've worn them with form-fitting clothes. She might have been speaking in general, but I sure would think this is an individual thing, depending on the specific type of bra, the specific breast form, it's size, and a whole lot of other things. Keep looking and trying on different things and you'll find even soft cup bras that can work.

 Best of luck!

Angela

Dx 10/12/2007, ILC, 2cm, Stage IIA, Grade 1, 6/15 nodes, ER-/PR+, HER2-
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Feb 10, 2009 05:38PM mthomp2020 wrote:

My first mastectomy bra was a "soft" cup bra, a Classique.  The cups have some stretch to them, so they adust.  I don't have any wrinkles in them at all.  I also have a Warner bra that's a softcup - I think it's one of their Friday bras.  Once again, no wrinkles.  Plus, I'm only an A, so if anyone was going to have a problem filling out a cup, it would be me!  You just need to find the kind of bra you like to wear first, then try on forms until you find one that works for you and matches well. 

Actually, all of my bras have been soft cup bras.  I get wrinkles in the seamed bras, but not in the soft cups.  If you can find one of the stretch foam bras that fits well and is comfortable, that would smooth out some of the irregularities as well.  Before my single mast, all I was wearing was the stretch foam bras, since my breasts were round, but didn't project enough to fully fill out some bras.  The foam really smooths that out without adding a bunch of padding.  Fortunately, there are more and more of these "Tshirt" bras available in mastectomy bras.

Marsha Dx 5/21/2007, IDC, Stage IV, Grade 3, mets, ER-/PR-, HER2+
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Feb 10, 2009 07:12PM Erica wrote:

Hi Angela,

Just wondering what kind of weighted leisure form you wear. I've tried one or two and didn't find them comfortable. I do like the Illusions form, which has a little weight, but I'm interested in finding other non-silicone leisure forms that add a little weight, look good, and feel comfortable.

Barbara

BreastFree.org (breastfree.org); BreastFree Blog (breastfree.blogspot.com); Twitter @BreastFree
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Feb 10, 2009 10:12PM carol1949 wrote:

I had great luck today and found an Amoena tria aire that fits wonderfully and I am able to wear it with a soft cup bra with just as much smoothness as my own breast!  It does come down to being perservering and not believing everything we are told!

Thanks to all of you for your support and help!

Dx 4/4/2008, IDC, 6cm+, Stage IIIB, ER+, HER2-
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Feb 14, 2009 12:16PM , edited Feb 14, 2009 12:16PM by angeljoy

Barbara,

I checked the package my weighted leisure form came in and all it says is "Perfection Puff" and "Sea-Shore". It's a swim and leisure from I got at my fitter, Ida Joy Shoppes in Cleveland. It seems to be soft material like in a puff with a weight in the bottom.  I can wear it in a pocketed or non pocketed bra very comfortably  I'll try to find out from them who makes it.

Angela

Dx 10/12/2007, ILC, 2cm, Stage IIA, Grade 1, 6/15 nodes, ER-/PR+, HER2-
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Feb 15, 2009 07:23AM , edited Mar 28, 2009 07:06PM by lilums

This Post was deleted by lilums.
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Feb 15, 2009 08:58AM Erica wrote:

Angela and lilums,

The perfection looks comfortable--nice to have another alternative. Thanks for the info!

BreastFree.org (breastfree.org); BreastFree Blog (breastfree.blogspot.com); Twitter @BreastFree
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Feb 16, 2009 07:57PM mollyann wrote:

Thank you for this thread. I have been alone in this decision-making. I had no idea there were this many choices.

Look it up. Ask questions. Question authority. Respect other's choices.
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Feb 26, 2009 04:44PM , edited Feb 26, 2009 04:47PM by 2Hands4me

Can someone help me out? So far, I've had no referral from my surgeon for any post-mastectomy products. He says he'll give me a prescription for a regular prosthesis at 6 weeks! I don't know what my insurance will cover, from what company, for foam prosthesis or bras. My remaining breast hangs lower than the fiberfill I'm using. What are the "push-up" bras at Wal-Mart? Would this help the left breast to be higher? Or does the foam prosthesis have some weight that would help the right breast be lower? Do you use a push-up bra alone or with a regular bra? It seems like my bra doesn't ride up, just isn't heavy enough! Any ideas?

I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. Philippians 4:13 His Hands hold me up! Dx 1/8/2009, IDC, <1cm, Stage I, Grade 3, 0/5 nodes, ER-/PR-
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Feb 26, 2009 07:13PM vangoghpro wrote:

Wow, I feel I have just learned so much from reading these posts. I had a left mastectomy on February 18 and for the first time today I left the house to go shopping. Before I went out, I stood looking at all my bras and picked a very soft older bra to wear. I stuffed the empty left side with a sock and it did not look anywhere near the size of my real right breast, but at least there was no indentation. Until I can see a professional fitter in a few weeks I did a little research and ended up ordering something off ebay - it hasn't arrived yet but it was a Jodee. I have to go back to work and stand in front of ninth graders all day so I really need to appear balanced. I will definitely make note of some of your recommendations.

 Does anyone here have a suggestion for the best breast form for an exercise which involves lots of movement? I haven't been able to ride my horse for several weeks, but when I do (if I ever get to ride him again) I would like to feel fairly secure that the breast form will stay in place. I plan on using a tight athletic bra which should help. Thanks in advance for any suggestions.

Dx 2/11/2009, IDC, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 1/15 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Mar 2, 2009 09:19PM , edited Mar 2, 2009 09:30PM by starzhere

When I first had my mastectomy, I wore my regular bra and stuffed it with fiber fill until it matched the size of my regular breast.  It worked well enough, that I wasn't motivated to get a breast form for about two years and I wore T-shirts and sweaters.  

2hands, once you are able to get fitted with a breast form that has weight, you won't have the problem of one side being up too high.  You can, also, find a breast form that has the drape of a more mature breast.  It won't be as full at the top and it's less firm. 

I think that a push up bra might help push up your unreconstructed side while you are waiting to be able to wear a breast form.  You could, also, try putting some fiber fill under your natural breast to push it up`in the cup of your bra.  You would need to get a bra with good coverage.  A low cut bra wouldn't work.

~elaine~

Dx 10/31/1989, IDC, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 3, 0/12 nodes, ER-/PR-
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Mar 7, 2009 03:07PM , edited Mar 7, 2009 03:18PM by shrink

Well here's an interesting sight/site:

 


Members of Quilters of South Carolina have created
one-of-a-kind bras for Breast Cancer Awareness. The
exhibit consists of 49 original works of art which
are unique, entertaining, and beautiful, all to
make the public aware of breast cancer, to memorialize
those lost to the disease, and to honor survivors.
 

Go to quiltersofsc.org and choose the Artful bra project.

  
Dx 5/23/2007, IBC, 6cm+, Stage IIIC, Grade 3, 21/21 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2-
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Mar 17, 2009 02:59AM , edited Mar 17, 2009 10:07PM by 1in8

Have I been royally ripped off or is this standard operating procedure when using insurance? Should I even bother checking w/ my insurance / medical group? Or is it a lost cause?

I went through my HMO to get my tank / cami's and breast prostheses since I have 80% coverage that way vs. 50% coverage if I order on my own. I'm easy to fit 'cuz I'm a bilateral and there's no existing other side to match. I'm difficult to fit 'cuz I have truncal lymphedema and weight is an issue. Thanks to www.breastfree.org and this thread, I came across Silique Comfort-Lite forms and decided to give them a try.

I was sent to Orthopaedic Rehab Center and literally told to point and choose from some catalogs in a binder. I got charged $10 copay just for this privilege. I asked if I could order from other catalogs / websites not in the binder and was told I could. I requested a PAIR of Silique Comfort-Lite forms to be ordered from www.truekare.com since they had the best online price: $200/pair.

Now for the (insurance) math which is worse than new math:
I'm charged $85.76 for my 20% copay plus shipping and handling. Hello? The forms cost $200/pair. I'm told that since they ordered it for me, I have to pay according to the HMO fee schedule which stipulates $428.80 for bilateral forms. That just does not compute in my chemo-fogged brain. How can it be that my forms have more than doubled in price just 'cuz I'm going through insurance!? Surprised Has that been your experience too? I'd be less upset if they told me I had a 50% copay since I'm going out of network even though technically I'm going through an in network provider referred by my HMO. At least then I wouldn't be bothered by the discrepancy. I'm still having issues w/ the fact that less than 24% of my medical bills have been paid even though I have 70% coverage when using the PPO portion (I have Blue Cross POS so I can go HMO or PPO). I'm sick and tired of having to battle insurance to receive my full benefits and the stress of receiving late notices and collection warnings. Yell

My mind was so blown away by the foobs discrepancy that I didn't realize until later that I got ripped off for the TLC tank / cami's also. $12.20 is NOT 20% of $28.00 in my book. When I asked for the actual cost of the tank yesterday, I was told $28.00 so I don't know what's going on here. $61.00 was never mentioned. I wrote down the amounts quoted to me and I have a witness who is neither cancer nor chemo impaired.

BTW, it's taking over 1 1/2 months to try to get everything straightened out. My authorizations kept having to be redone since wrong items, codes, and quantities were used. I was told that I should be able to get 2 tanks (1 to wash and 1 to wear) and I requested 1 more that I would pay out-of-pocket myself. I only get 1 tank plus the out-of-pocket one. So I end up paying for the 3rd one myself and that will have to be shipped to me. To top off the madness, only 1 prosthesis was authorized and ordered even though everyone involved knew I had bilateral mastectomies. I even specifically told my HMO to make sure a PAIR was requested since I needed one for the left and another for the right. I really think having a uni-foob w/ draw much more attention than if I continue to go foob-free. Embarassed I've been fine going foob-free since my mastectomies. However, my sister is getting married and I would really like to be able to dress up and have my clothes "drape" properly. I also need the "camouflage" when I go out of town and see my in-laws.

The Comfort-Lite forms are very light due to the microbead filling. These are my very first forms so I don't have others to compare them size-wise. The TLC tank / cami has a shelf bra and can be worn by itself as a tank or used underneath as a camisole. I ordered MED since I prefer my clothing looser and it fits me like a size SM instead. So keep in mind that it does run on the small side.

Tami

Edited to add email responses from Truekare and Silique HQ, Regency International Marketing:

Ortho Rehab ordered the forms at wholesale directly from RIM rather than at retail cost from Truekare. Also vendors do NOT pay more as Ortho Rehab was insinuating to me yesterday but in fact get to buy at drastically reduced wholesale prices. Dealers get to set their own prices.

Consumers have to buy at retail from dealers or online. At the time of this posting, Truekare does have the best online retail price. I still say it is not reasonable and makes no sense to pay more for something just 'cuz the HMO fee schedule is higher than the actual costs. I suspect someone somewhere is trying to pull a quick one as Ortho Rehab ends up getting the maximum amount from insurance and myself. A word to the wise, ask for cost estimates ahead of time for HMO, PPO, in or out of network. So many mixed up, contradictory reasons were thrown at me for the sudden jump in price that it's no wonder I ended up feeling helpless, confused and unfairly taken advantage of again. Get EVERYTHING in writing.

Bilateral Mastectomy; 6 cycles TC; 30 rounds Radiation; Tamoxifen 2/09-11/10; Boniva 2/09-4/10; Anastrozole 11/10-3/12; Chemopause 8/08-2/12; Tamoxifen 3/12-3/13; Anastrozole 3/13-now Dx 4/11/2008, IDC, 3cm, Stage IIIB, Grade 3, 6/16 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Mar 17, 2009 07:56AM nagem wrote:

Tami, I'm so sorry that happened to you. I had horrible fights with Oxford during my treatment. You have to see it as just another job, and every day do one task related to insurance. Keep scrupulous notes, get every person's name, save every piece of paper you're sent, and follow their instructions even if they don't make sense. There was a human resources person at my company who helped me navigate the insanity, but I thought she was going to have a nervous breakdown by the end. Good news: I got every penny I was owed in the end. Irony: I've since switched to Blue Cross/Blue Shield because I thought it was a better company.

nagem (underthestinkwoodtree.blogspot...) Dx 9/23/2005, ILC, 1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 3, 1/13 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2+

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