• I have an appointment next week with a plastic surgeon, my question is what do I have to expect with this appointment? They told me it's

    Asked by cris on Wednesday, January 23, 2013

    I have an appointment next week with a plastic surgeon, my question is what do I have to expect with this appointment? They told me it's

    just a consultation. Just feeling alittle nervous.

    10 Answers from the Community

    10 answers
    • Nancebeth's Avatar
      Nancebeth

      Have you already had a mastectomy? A lumpectomy? Any treatment yet?
      I visited 3 breast surgeons, 2 plastics and 2 oncologists before I decided who would make up "my team." Luckily, my PS was a friend from elementary school so I trusted him completely. The first visit with him was to discuss my options. I suppose that was the consultation. I had pretty much already made my decision to have a bilateral mastectomy with immediate reconstruction. I was not a good candidate fro TRAM or DIEP reconstruction so I went with implants.
      He referred me to the brest surgeon that he wanted to work with for the mastectomy. I liked him right away and we scheduled my surgery.
      You should expect to discuss your options based on what type of surgery you are having.

      about 4 years ago
    • cris' Avatar
      cris

      Hi Nancebeth, I will be having a bilat. mastectomy in March followed by 6 weeks of radiation 10 minutes everyday, then I'll be having my reconstruction. I have 4 more treaments of Taxol left, will be finished on Feb. 18th. Sorry I should put more information with my question. The last of my team is my plastic surgeon,

      about 4 years ago
    • Nancebeth's Avatar
      Nancebeth

      I did need chemo based on my Oncotype DX score, but I didn't know that until after my surgery. My nodes were clear and I didn't need any radiation, although I didn't know that until surgery either. I chose the implants for that reason as well. In case I needed radiation, implants could be easily replaced, however, if I used my own tissue (TRAM or DIEP) and needed radiation, it would probably compromise the reconstruction.
      There are many websites that offer assistance with what to ask at your visits to specific doctors (General surgeon, plastics, onc, etc) and that may be helpful. You should also have a list of goals you want to achieve with your surgery. I only had 2 goals: I wanted to come out of surgery with something on my chest, even if it was a tiny A-cup (I was busting out of a double D before) and I wanted to have minimal scarring. My surgeon achieved both of those goals. I have pictures and my entire story on my blog
      nancebeth.blogspot.com

      about 4 years ago
    • karen1956's Avatar
      karen1956

      Consultation makes sense....a chance to talk about next steps....what type of recon you want...what type of recon the PS specializes in, time line for surgery....recovery etc.....Write down questions you have for PS....I only interviewed one PS, but I knew people who had used him, so I was okay with it....he only did TE with exchange surgery....as I was nervous about other types of recon and not really a candidate, I didn't look else where.....btw...when I was having some problems with implants post exhange, I consulted with two different PS and came away saying I want my PS to do any revisions..

      about 4 years ago
    • pressinfwd's Avatar
      pressinfwd

      I had my consultation with the plastic surgeon last friday (1/18/13). We discuss my options and I decided to have implants. She said I would not be a good candidate for the flap. We discuss the recovery, hospital stay and steps following the surgery i.e. expanders, implants, nipple reconstruction. She ask if I wanted to be larger, same size or smaller. I have been a DD for as long as I can remember, so I'm ready for smaller ones :) She measured me and explain how the implants would look. I was concerned with infection with immediate reconstructive, but was told there's no more infection than with any other surgery. My surgery date is February 21, 2013 (bilateral masectomy).

      about 4 years ago
    • nonnie917's Avatar
      nonnie917

      One thing I can tell you is go loaded with questions you want answered. If you are having a mastectomy, are you having an implant put in right away or are you going to use your own tissue which is a flap reconstruction? Make sure you ask about the amount of breast tissue you will have left over if you have a mastectomy or are you going to have to have balloons planted behind the chest wall to expand your chest for implants later. Questions like that. Healing time, can and can't do after surgery. I am scheduled for my final reconstruction phase of my surgery and I will not be allowed to lift my arms over my head for a couple of weeks after the surgery because my flaps are going to be sewn to my chest wall. So think about questions concerning your particular type of surgery and get them written down so you don't forget them. This type of surgery is the really less scarey one compared to the others. Believe, been there and going to finish it. Can't wait either. I am going to look normal again and when I get my nipple sewed on the new breasts after 3 months of healing I am going to have a rose tatooed around them rather than a regular areloa. Why not? It's fun and no one sees it except me and my husband. Hope some of what I have said has helped you?

      about 4 years ago
    • nonnie917's Avatar
      nonnie917

      Nancebeth. I am surprised the doctor's allowed the reconstruction after they discovered what needed to be done with your cancer. My doctor's would not even consider implants or TRAM flap reconstruction right after the mastectomy for that very reason. Chemo or another other type of cancer treatment ruins what good they did with the implants so my doctors chose to wait until I had my mastectomy and sentinal node removal before making a decision on when I could have reconstruction surgery. I had my mastectomy in August. My flap reconstruction in September and Feb. 4 I go in for my last part of the reconstruction process and that is sewing the flaps to the chest wall and removing excess breast skin and implanting a small silicone implant if I don't get the size I want after they do all that. I am getting excited to get this finished. It has been a long process with the healing because I am a diabetic, but I take care of myself so the doctors were really proud of my last A1C tests. They said if they didn't know me that they were swear I didn't have diabetes. Today I am a happy camper.

      about 4 years ago
    • DianaL's Avatar
      DianaL

      I am having my breast reconstruction on February 15th. My surgical oncologist and my medical oncologist did not recommend immediate reconstruction at the time of the bilateral mastectomy. I am a Type II Diabetic, under control; however, the healing took from June 14th til the end of August of 2012. My breasts were large DD and my skin was thin. I will not be a DD now probably a C/D. When I went for my Plastic Surgery consult in November, he agreed with my two doctors and said he would not have done immediate reconstruction. I am not a good candidate for either of the flap surgeries so he will place expanders under the muscle and then steril skin over the muscle to act as the pocket for the expanders. He is also going to remove all the excess skin and tissue from under my arm and lyposuction tissue from my back to my breasts for a more realistic look. I researched the internet and asked everyone I met that had reconstruction what it was like. I am happy with my decision but a little anxious about another surgery. Everything with cancer takes such a long time. I was diagnosed on April 3rd and my reconstruction will not even be complete by that time this year. Good luck with whatever you decide. As everyone has said ask lots of questions!

      about 4 years ago
    • Nancebeth's Avatar
      Nancebeth

      Nonnie, one of the reasons I decided on the implants I got was because if I needed radiation or chemo, my surgery most likely would not be compromised and if it was, it would be easier to replace an implant. If I had gone with TRAM or DIEP, if the breast skin gets burned or otherwise compromised by further treatment, I would not have any more tissue to use to replace it. In addition, I had osteomyilitis in 2011, so there was a greater risk of infection and the TRAM and DIEP require more hours of microsurgery. I am happy with the way they look in clothes and when naked they look fine, just nippleless. Not having nipples doesn't bother me at all. I purchased some prosthetic ones but hardly ever use them.

      about 4 years ago
    • Nomadicme's Avatar
      Nomadicme

      Make sure you are informed about what you could be offered so you can ask questions that matter, as these things go at a faster rate than expected (I found). If you're getting a mastectomy, is it double or single? If so are you wanting the diep flap (you get a tummy tuck, but there are issue with stomach strength). What I'd ask this surgeon, if you're contemplating diep ask the surgeon how many of those he has done, AND how many of them failed (it's unfortunately quite common to have a diep rejected, but if your surgeon is skilled at them and you're a good candidate then the outcomes are great).
      If you want to get the latissimus dorsi one with implants, then I'd ask if he can do a scarless AND if that's really necessary, as in could you do with just implants.
      You get the idea, do some research and feel free to ask specific questions.

      about 4 years ago

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