SOURCE: American Society of Plastic Surgeons

American Society of Plastic Surgeons

August 21, 2012 07:00 ET

New Survey: Women Want to See Breast Reconstruction Results Before Cancer Surgery

American Society of Plastic Surgeons Launches Campaign to Educate Women About Their Options

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, IL--(Marketwire - Aug 21, 2012) - A new survey released today by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) shows 89 percent of women want to see what breast reconstruction surgery results would look like before undergoing treatment for breast cancer,* prompting the world's largest group of board-certified plastic surgeons to launch a landmark show-and-tell event as part of Breast Reconstruction Awareness (BRA) Day USA, October 17, 2012 in New Orleans.

"We are going to provide information in a way that's never been done before on this level," said ASPS President Malcolm Z. Roth. "A group of breast reconstruction patients will show a group of breast cancer patients what their reconstruction choices look like. This is something that until now has been a taboo topic, and we want to give these women a forum to get the information they need."

Many breast cancer patient organizations report that a majority of women want to go beyond the usual routine of looking at before and after photos, to actually seeing the real results of various breast reconstruction procedures, in person, and having a chance to discuss those results with breast cancer survivors who've had the procedure.

The survey, conducted by Harris Interactive found:

  • Less than a quarter (23%) of women know the wide range of breast reconstruction options available.
  • Only 22% of women are familiar with the quality of outcomes that can be expected.
  • Only 19% of women understand that the timing of their treatment for breast cancer and the timing of their decision to undergo reconstruction greatly impacts their options and results.

Not only are some women never shown breast reconstruction surgery results, but previous research shows 7 out of 10 women diagnosed with breast cancer are never even told about their breast reconstruction options.**

ASPS Member Surgeon Frank DellaCroce, MD believes that plastic surgeons should be a crucial part of any breast cancer patient's team of caregivers.

"I see a great number of patients who come in and say 'I wish I'd known about certain reconstruction options beforehand. I wish I could turn back the clock.' But the problem is, you can't turn back the clock," said Dr. DellaCroce, who founded the Center for Restorative Breast Surgery in New Orleans along with ASPS Member Surgeon Scott Sullivan, MD.

The ASPS and The Plastic Surgery Foundation are launching BRA Day USA to kick off a new campaign to raise awareness about breast reconstruction options. Singer/songwriter Jewel is the campaign's spokesperson and has written the inspirational song "Flower" to raise funds for the cause.

"I'm always continually amazed at how resilient women are, and how when faced with a difficult position they find the courage to say, 'I am going to fight on and I'm even going to be better.' And that's what made me want to write this song," said Jewel.

Beginning today, Jewel's song is available for download on the iTunes Store at
http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewAlbum?id=554163134. Jewel will also perform a charitable concert on October 29, 2012 in New Orleans during Plastic Surgery The Meeting. Event proceeds will be donated to the Breast Reconstruction Awareness Fund of The Plastic Surgery Foundation and be used to support national and local breast reconstruction organizations.

B-ROLL, SOUND BITES, WEB ELEMENTS & STILL PHOTOS - Including broadcast quality video: http://bit.ly/M2S8bp

Media Contacts: Shannon McCormick, 614-932-9950 (ext. 14) or 614-477-2719, shannon@mediasourcetv.com or ASPS: 847-228-9900 media@plasticsurgery.org

*Source: The survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of ASPS from July 26-30, 2012 among 1,204 adult women ages 18 and older. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact the media representatives listed on this news release.

**Source: Cancer, February, 2008, Amy Alderman, MD

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