BRA Day Q & A with Ft Lauderdale Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Wigoda

Ft Lauderdale Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Wigoda takes a moment to answer some key questions on BRA Day and shares American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) new breast reconstruction planner guide for patients, families of patient and caregivers.

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Why do you think BRA day is important? It brings awareness both to breast cancer and breast reconstruction. Many women don’t realize they need to have mammograms or they forget or put it off. This is a reminder to think about breast cancer, have a mammogram and at least do a self breast exam. For those women with breast cancer, its important that they know about their options for breast reconstruction. It’s surprising how many women don’t know they have the option or don’t understand them. Surgeons or cancer doctors in some areas do not emphasize breast reconstruction, as they are more concerned with the cancer, and women are not given all of their options. With a little knowledge, they can begin to ask key questions about what can be done after having a mastectomy.

What progress have you seen in the last 10 years for this cause? Overall, there has been an increased awareness of breast cancer, especially with regard to early detection, importance of self breast exams and mammograms, and reconstructive options.

What message do you have for women who have undergone a mastectomy and are not aware of the reconstructive options? Women who have had a mastectomy or have been diagnosed with breast cancer should speak to a plastic surgeon who does breast reconstruction. It’s preferable to have this conversation before having any surgery, as the reconstruction can often be done at the same time as the mastectomy.

What advice would you give women looking for options post mastectomy? To look for a board certified plastic surgeon who devotes a significant percentage of his practice to breast reconstruction and is experienced in the latest techniques, so that all options can be discussed. There have been many advances in surgical techniques in the last 10 years,  it would be preferable to consult a surgeon with experience using these advanced techniques.