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National Breast Cancer Awareness Month Focuses on Optimism and Reconstruction

Just when you thought October was all about burnt orange and golden yellow, a sliver of pink peeks through. Pale pink ribbons adorn the back of cars on bumper stickers, while major retail chains swap their white plastic bags for pink ones and the man behind the register asks for a Pink Ribbon donation. National Breast Cancer Awareness Month marks international recognition of the disease, which will affect one in 8 women. The campaign is funded by charities interested in raising awareness, funds, and support. October reflects a positive outlook on breast cancer, particularly in terms of reconstruction.

Major Breast Cancer Awareness Month Events

Race for the Cure is arguably the flagship event for Breast Cancer Awareness month, with over a million people participating annually. The event is sponsored by the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, which has invested over $2 billion since its beginnings in the 1980s. There are international variants of Race for the Cure in Bulgaria, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, United Kingdom, and more. Global Illumination is another top participant, headed by cosmetics powerhouse Estee Lauder. The company uses bright pink lights to light up major landmarks like the Empire State Building, Constantine’s Arch, and the Tokyo Tower. The NFL also recognizes October as Breast Cancer Awareness Month by sporting pink apparel.

Breast Cancer Facts

  • Next to skin cancer, breast cancer is the most common cancer among American women with just under 30% being diagnosed.
  • Breast cancer death rates are higher than the rates of any other cancer, besides lung cancer.
  • In 2011, there were over 2.6 million breast cancer survivors living in the United States.
  • Only about one in every 1,000 males will get breast cancer.
  • Fatality rates related to breast cancer are on the decline. More specifically, Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) was pulled from many treatment plans after a study by Women’s Health Initiative. With HRT off the market, fatality rates decreased by 2% annually between 1995 and 2005.

Breast Reconstruction, Implants, and More

Breast cancer may involve a masectomy or double masectomy, the surgical removal of a breast or both breasts. On top of being a physically traumatizing experience, removing a woman’s breasts can take a toll on her mental and emotional well-being. And that’s why breast reconstruction after cancer is so popular in terms of rehabilitation and rebuilding one’s life after conquering disease. Women who have had their breasts removed have several options post surgery: they can keep their bodies the way they are, they may opt for temporary inserts, or they may choose surgical reconstruction. Breast reconstruction attempts to recreate a woman’s original breasts in terms of shape, size, and proportion. This may be done using only natural materials—a person’s own fat and muscles are useful materials, and desirable because there is no chance that the body will reject them. Even areolas and nipples can be constructed and reshaped using skin grafts.

Breast reconstruction can technically be performed by any surgeon, but the most aesthetically pleasing results often come from a board-certified plastic surgeon. These specialty doctors have studied aesthetics extensively and may help create the most natural look. Not all post-surgery women want implants, but they can be desirable to women with previously larger breasts or simply those who want a new boost. Silicone and saline implants have made vast improvements over the years and are solid choices for breast reconstruction.

Breast Augmentation Specialists has hand-picked a national network of board-certified plastic surgeons. These doctors specialize in breast reconstruction, breast implants, and other breast surgeries. Browse our directory or contact us today today to schedule a personal consultation with a surgeon in your area.

 

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