While I’ve been honored to help all types of plastic surgery patients in my 33 years as a board-certified plastic surgeon, one of my specialties is performing breast reconstruction for women who have undergone a mastectomy for breast cancer. The cosmetic surgery process can be emotional for anyone, but especially for patients who are also dealing with a cancer diagnosis. If you find yourself in the same boat, it can be helpful to hear from someone who has been in your shoes, and several of my patients have been kind enough to offer insight into their breast reconstruction experiences.
This first letter is from a patient who reminds us of all the little things involved in this plastic surgery procedure, like choosing procedural options, scheduling, insurance, and more:
After my mastectomy for breast cancer, I was referred to Dr. Elliott for my reconstructive surgery, and I’m so grateful that I was. Dr. Elliott and his team are outstanding. They listened to my concerns and wishes, and they worked to give me a reconstruction that I am completely happy with. Dr. Elliott and Patti are tremendously professional, knowledgeable, and competent; this gave me confidence and peace of mind regarding the entire process. It was also wonderful to work with the nurses and other staff members. Suzanne was particularly helpful in dealing with my insurance company, getting my appointments scheduled, and in helping me find answers to any question I had about the process. When I speak to other women who are going through treatment for breast cancer, I always mention the great experience I had working with Dr. Elliott and his team.
Breast reconstruction has an impact not only on the patients themselves but on their families as well, so the next letter offers a spouse’s perspective:
Dear Dr. Elliott and team,
I just wanted to take a minute on behalf of my wife and me, to personally thank you for the reconstructive breast surgery you performed in 2012. You and your team, Patti, Michelle and Suzanne could not have treated us any better. We cannot adequately put into words the gratitude we feel towards all of you.
In addition to providing incredible medical care, you guys were willing to work with us and our insurance provider to help us manage the overwhelming medical bills we were facing. We cannot tell you how much we appreciate that. No one is ever prepared for a cancer diagnosis. But the information and the cooperation that you all provided was instrumental in helping us deal with the last 15 months.
We have recommended you a thousand times since D’s surgery. That will continue as long as you are practicing. We are life long fans. You guys are the best. Thanks again!
B & D
Finally, the third patient of an example of why breast reconstruction is a “process.” Patients typically require a few different surgeries in order to achieve results that help them feel confident, and the patient below is a reminder that while it may take longer than you expect before you see your final plastic surgery results, it can be well worth the effort.
Dear Dr. Elliott,
Thank you for everything you have done for me over my twenty two month journey of my breast reconstruction surgery. When I came to your office in July 2011, with only skin grafts on my chest, for my consultation with you about what my options were for my breast reconstruction, I knew you were the one and only one who could get me where I am today.
I have been in awe of your knowledge, skill, dedication, professionalism and the care you have given to me.
I know there were some set backs we did not expect, but we got through them together. Without you, it would have been very difficult for me to continue. I know I pushed you sometimes, but you did not give up on me. You knew when to say no not now, let’s wait awhile for the next step. You were always honest with me and I thank you.
Looking at myself after the final surgery two weeks ago, I would have never dreamed I would have I would have breasts again, but they are beautiful to me.
I want women looking for breast reconstruction, no matter how difficult, to review my words and know they have found the right Plastic Surgeon. Your 23 years of dedication to the field of breast reconstruction puts you at the top of Plastic Surgeons. I am happy my heart chose you.
You will always have a special place in my heart for the rest of my life. I pray the best for you and your family.
Whether breast reconstruction is one of the first or last steps in your journey toward cancer recovery, rest assured that my staff and I have helped thousands of women through similar situations and we’re here to help you as well. To discuss your reconstructive options, schedule a consultation with me, Dr. Franklyn Elliott. Or, for more information about breast reconstructive and other plastic surgery procedures, explore my website or follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.