Many breast cancers survivors are unaware of their options after a mastectomy. For women who are not considering reconstruction, a breast prosthesis offers more options to fit any lifestyle without additional surgery.
According to the American Cancer Society, 232,570 new cases of invasive breast cancer are expected to be diagnosed in 2014. After receiving a cancer diagnosis and making the decision to move forward with a mastectomy, what you’re going to do after surgery is often the last thing on your mind.
However, knowing the available options and being able to make an informed choice assists many women in making a decision. A post mastectomy breast prosthesis custom fitted by a professional is a great solution for restoring symmetry, balance, and confidence.
Post Mastectomy Breast Prosthesis Types
- Post-Surgical Soft-Form Camisole — After a mastectomy, lumpectomy, or reconstructive surgery, this prosthesis can be worn for comfort purposes. These camisoles are made of a soft, flexible material with pockets where detachable breast forms of your choice can be placed.
- Silicone Breast Form — Silicone breast prostheses are made to replicate the weight and feel of a real breast and can be made with nipples to appear more realistic.
- Lightweight Breast Form — This non-silicone breast prosthesis is usually made from foam or fiberfill, making it softer and lighter than silicone. These prostheses are suitable to be worn immediately after surgery, as well as while swimming or exercising.
- Attachable Breast Form — A silicone or lightweight breast form can be backed with an adhesive for attaching directly to the skin on your chest, rather than sitting unattached in a bra or camisole.
How Breast Prostheses Are Fitted
Once you have completely healed from surgery, which usually takes around 4 to 6 weeks, you can be fitted for a prosthesis. There are several sizes and styles of breast prostheses and bras to choose from. The certified mastectomy fitter at your appointment will aid you in finding the bra and prosthesis that will provide you with the best support, function, and comfort. Usually taking 45 minutes to an hour, the fitting appointment is much like getting fitted for a normal bra. Our private dressing rooms at Horton’s Orthotics & Prosthetics are designed for your comfort, so feel free to ask questions and express your concerns.
Post mastectomy swimwear and other conveniences can also be ordered at the time of your fitting in addition to your post mastectomy breast prosthesis. Be sure to bring your insurance information and a doctor’s prescription with you and talk to the fitter about what is covered so they can inform you of the options that are covered by your insurance plan.
Benefits of a Post Mastectomy Breast Prosthesis
In addition to the cosmetic benefits of having a prosthesis, which help with post-surgery confidence, a prosthesis also helps with shielding your surgical scars, avoiding back pain, and correcting uneven shoulders or posture issues that can develop after a mastectomy.
Choosing a post mastectomy breast prosthesis is very personal, and the decision often changes based on what is important to you as an individual. The best way to know if a prosthesis is going to fit your lifestyle is to set up an exploratory appointment with a fitting consultant. For respectful, friendly, and knowledgeable advice, set up a free consultation appointment for a post mastectomy breast prosthesis with Horton’s Orthotics and Prosthetics today by calling 501-683-8889. We’ve been providing quality prosthetics and helping cancer survivors know their options since 1981 and are prepared to provide you a lifetime of support!