Mastectomy Disadvantages and New Options

We’re not here to draw too much attention to the actress, Angelina Jolie, but Ms. Jolie has brought some positive light to the subject of double mastectomy surgery…and even to the improvement options available to women who could be facing a double mastectomy. What are the mastectomy disadvantages?

In our previous post, we touched upon the pros and cons of choosing a lumpectomy over a full mastectomy for the removal of breast cancer. To reiterate, lumpectomy is less invasive and provides a greater outlook for retaining a greater semblance of appearance of the natural breast. Another thing that might surprise you is that women in the U.S. are much more likely to get a mastectomy, double or otherwise, because of societal perceptions and how women feel about their bodies; there’s much more acceptance, it seems, in the States on these matters.

This might seem like a “no-brainer” for most of us on the outside, but for some women, removing the entire breast provides greater peace of mind, as the likelihood of getting all of the cancer the first time, in one procedure is higher.

However, radiation therapy may still be needed, depending on the results of the pathology.

Mastectomy has some possible disadvantages:

  • Mastectomy takes longer and is more extensive than lumpectomy, with more post-surgery side effects and a longer recuperation time.
  • Mastectomy means a permanent loss of your breast.
  • You are likely to have additional surgeries to reconstruct your breast after mastectomy.

It’s encouraging knowing great advances are being made in this, the fastest growing, and one of the most common of medical procedures in the world—certainly the most popular of elective procedures.

So do your homework. Know your options!