ANCHOR LEAD: MORE AND MORE WOMEN ARE CHOOSING TO HAVE BOTH BREASTS REMOVED WHEN THEY HAVE BREAST CANCER, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
More than twice as many women are choosing a bilateral mastectomy- having both breasts removed at once when breast cancer is found in one breast- now than did so just a few years ago. Gedge Rosson, director of breast reconstruction at Johns Hopkins, says careful weighing of the issues is necessary.
ROSSON: When we do a unilateral reconstruction many women need some touch ups or revisions, a breast lift on the other side to try to get it to match. The patients with the best symmetry down the road are those who have bilateral mastectomies, but we try not to lead people into wanting a bilateral mastectomy purely for cosmetic reasons, we really only do that for patients who have a high risk in terms of family history or the BRCA mutations, and those patients often want to have the bilateral mastectomies. :33
Studies show that even having both breasts removed does not eliminate the possibility of recurrence. I’m Elizabeth Tracey reporting.