Breast reconstruction patients are often uninformed about their treatment options, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, and can suffer emotional and mental distress as a result. The organization has launched a new campaign to educate breast cancer patients and provide information that will help them achieve better outcomes.
A recent report has shown that a majority of the women who are eligible for breast reconstruction have more options than they ever actually know.
The American Society of Plastic Surgeons has launched an awareness campaign about breast reconstruction that emphasizes a team approach. The campaign includes online videos that address different treatment options, patient stories, and literature from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.
Almost 70 percent of women who agree to breast cancer surgery are missing out on forms of patient care that are available to them, according to the ASPS. In nearly all cases, being aware of all the options would ensure a better outcome.
More than 79,000 women underwent breast reconstruction in the U.S. in 2008 – a 39 percent increase over 2007. The ASPS wants to ensure that women who have reconstruction – and those who chose not to – are fully informed.
Dr. John Canady, president of the ASPS, noted that women diagnosed with breast cancer should be immediately referred to a full team of physicians that can provide comprehensive breast care, including a plastic surgeon.
Collaboration between the plastic surgeon and other healthcare providers, like gynecologists, oncologists, pathologists, radiologists and general surgeons, can help ensure patients have an ideal treatment plan. And the earlier they collaborate during the process, the better the plan.
For more information about the new awareness campaign, visit www.plasticsurgery.org/choices/