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Cosmetic surgery after radiotherapy


Re: Cosmetic surgery after radiotherapy

Hi Pippi 1969


Thank you for your post.


Previous treatment can sometimes influence future wound healing.  However, whether this will be a problem for you, is not possible to say. 


As your surgeon feels there is a significant risk for you, it might be helpful to discuss further breast surgery with more than one specialist in order to get different opinions about what might be the choice for you.


If you did decide to go ahead, it’s also important to have realistic expectations of how the reduced breast might look and feel and what degree of symmetry might be achievable.  You can ask to see photographs of what you might expect.


If you would like a second opinion, your surgeon, may be able to recommend someone else in your area.  However, sometimes for funding reasons, your current consultant may not be able to refer you to some specialists.


They may advise to talk to your GP about getting a second opinion from another specialist.


You may worry that asking for a second opinion will upset your consultant. But this is unlikely to happen. Doctors often ask for the opinion of a colleague, especially for complex cases.


Also, the British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons (BAPRAS) has a list of surgeons and hospitals with plastic surgery units.


We also have a Someone Like Me service which you can read more about here.  Some people find it helpful to speak to someone who’s been in a similar situation to hear what choice they decided to make and why.  It may be possible to match you with several people to explore different options.


Do call our Helpline if you would like to talk this through or have any further questions. Your call will be confidential, and the number is free from UK landlines and all mobile networks.


The number is 0808 800 6000 (Text relay prefix 18001).


Our opening hours are Monday to Friday 9am - 4pm and 9am -1pm on Saturday. Out of hours you can leave a message and we will call you back when we next open.


Best wishes




Breast Cancer Now Nurse


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This thread will now be closed from further replies. If you have any additional questions or would like to provide feedback, please start a new thread.


Re: Cosmetic surgery after radiotherapy

Hello pippi1969


Thanks for posting your question.


We hope to respond to you tomorrow.


In the meantime our Helpline is open until 4pm today if you would like to talk things through. 


If you do phone our Helpline please let us know that you have asked a question on our forum so that we know your query has been answered. Thank you


With best wishes.


Breast Cancer Now Nurse


Cosmetic surgery after radiotherapy

Hi I had surgery 2 days ago and originally I was suppose to have an expander on my right breast and a reduction on my left breast to make them kind of equal as I had a mastectomy on my right breast with radiotherapy afterwards 1.5 years ago and I had a lumpectomy on my breast with radiotherapy and chemo on my left breast 9 years ago. So this Tuesday gone (25.02.2020) my surgeon said that I would have significant risk to the left breast with it possibly not healing due to the radiotherapy I had 9 years ago. So for now I have decided to just have the expander put in and decide at a later date once I know more about the risks on having surgery on a breast that had radiotherapy to it.

I'm just trying get information from other people's experiences. The breast with the expander in had radiotherapy and I will see how the wouds are healing. You see I have never smoked or drink at all, I live quite a healthy lifestyle. So at the moment I am still lopsided and really want it doing tbh but I'm in limbo and unsure