Four years ago I was diagnosed with breast cancer and I was devastated when my surgeon told me that I had a malignancy and suggested I have a mastectomy. Aside from the worry of the disease itself, I could not image what it would do to me to lose a breast. Losing a breast to me meant deformity, losing my sexuality, femininity, self-esteem and self confidence. My appearance is very important to me.
When I heard I could have immediate breast reconstructive surgery, I knew right then and there I was going for it. My breast reconstruction is wonderful and I thank my plastic surgeon, Dr. Allan Rosen, for his gifted skills, understanding and compassion. I feel whole again. Breast reconstruction gave me back my self esteem, self-confidence and femininity that I knew I would not have without the reconstruction.
My mom had breast cancer over 30 years ago and this procedure wasn't offered to women at that time. I always remember how depressed she was when she looked at herself in the mirror. But women today, do not have to face this depression and loss because of what is offered to them through breast reconstruction.
I never felt deformed because when I woke up in the hospital, I had the beginning stages of a new replaced, reconstructed breast. I am strong advocate for breast reconstruction and would strongly encourage any women who has to face the loss of a breast to go have it done.
Joanne from New Jersey