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News presenter: Welcome back to WBRZ news 2 at 4:00, I’m joined now by plastic surgeon Dr. Anthony Stephens, welcome back how are you doing?
Anthony Stephens: well thank you, I’m doing fine how about yourself?
News presenter: Doing well, doing well. So, it’s Breast cancer awareness month.
Anthony Stephens: Right.
News presenter: And you are here to talk to us about reconstruction options.
Anthony Stephens: Reconstruction after mastectomy and there’s a lot of questions from patients that they have about that one of the most asked questions that I get will insurance companies cover breast reconstruction and the answer is yes, most will because it a, bill was passed back in 1998 the ones helped breast cancer act states that most insurance companies that cover mastectomy will have to cover breast reconstruction and not only that but they have to cover whatever you do the contralateral side to make it balanced or symmetric, so those are good things to know when you need to have that.
News presenter: Right, so what options do we have?
Anthony Stephens: Well, the basic options are using your own body tissue, we call it autologous tissue or using an implant an autologous tissue or using an implant such as the one that we have here, now if we’re using our own body tissue, we can use from the, take tissue from the abdomen transplant it to the chest wall, make a breast mound or we can use the muscle from the back, along with a tissue expander which is just a balloon if you will that’s put underneath the skin is inflated over several months then it makes space for a nice silicone gel implant that this is an anatomic shaped implant, most people would call this the gummy bear which it provides for a very nice breast mound reconstruction and from there we’ll reconstruct the nipple and the areola and that can take up to six months’ time and some of these cases so it’s a good option and it depends on the patient’s health it depends on what the body shape is like if the patients have you at the patients then we can use different techniques and it all depends upon the patient.
News presenter: Ok, we’ve talked about this before, is there a time frame when this should be completed.
Anthony Stephens: Well, we’re talking about either immediate or delayed breast reconstruction and bring up a good point. Immediate reconstruction obviously is when we do it at the same time as the mastectomy and usually that provides some of the best results. Most of the time in the ladies if we’re going to do a radiation then we cannot do reconstruction, usually at the same time because it changes the skin envelope, and we may want to delay this six months to a year and so it just depends on what type of breast cancer we have and it depends on again their option is what they elect to do.
News presenter: Again, consult your doctor.
Anthony Stephens: Absolutely and every patient is different as we’ve talked about every time.
News presenter: That’s right, thank you so much Dr. Anthony Stephens we appreciate you coming in. you’re watching WBRZ news 2 at 4:00, we’ll be right back.