Planning for a mastectomy – what do patients need to be aware of?
Careful planning is crucial when it comes to a
mastectomy in Zurich. The plastic surgeon adjusts the breast removal operation
to fit each individual patient’s exact circumstances. That of course includes
accounting for the patient’s goals and desires, so that the results will be
harmonious and aesthetic in a way the patient is completely satisfied with.
However, mastectomy cannot always deliver the exact results people have in mind,
which is why it is so essential that the plastic surgeon talk to them
beforehand about what the treatment can offer and what, if any, restrictions
Finding the right surgeon
With any plastic surgery procedure, the most
important first step is to find the right surgeon for the job. Patients often
see this as a hurdle, because they aren’t sure how to identify a good, reliable
doctor. One of the biggest factors is choosing a surgeon who has the right
qualifications in the field of aesthetic, plastic, and reconstructive
surgery—that’s the only way to minimize the risk of complications and undesired
side effects. The surgeon’s level of experience also plays a role in
aesthetically pleasing, healthy-looking results.
The more frequently a plastic surgeon has
performed the particular procedure in question, the more likely it is that the
patient can look forward to desirable results and a low risk of complications.
Patients should never have a mastectomy performed
by any doctor who does not provide thorough consultation, fails to answer
questions, or puts any kind of pressure on them to have the operation. A
doctor-patient relationship based on trust is essential to the success of the
entire treatment, so if anything about the conversation feels „off“,
it’s better to get a second opinion from a different plastic surgeon.
The individual consultation session – the be-all and end-all of treatment
Any respectable plastic surgeon who values patient
safety, satisfaction and well-being will take plenty of time to discuss the
procedure with the patient in detail. As part of an individual consultation
session, the surgeon will ask about the patient’s personal motivations for
seeking a mastectomy, and together the two of them will work out a treatment
plan most suited to the patient’s needs.
It goes without saying that a good plastic surgeon
will use the consultation as an opportunity to answer the patient’s questions
and explain any risks associated with the procedure. Knowing all the key
details about the mastectomy process is the only way for patients to set
realistic expectations for their own results and make an informed decision on
whether to proceed.
What kinds of preliminary medical tests are necessary?
Most of the time, no preliminary medical testing is
needed before a mastectomy. The personal consultation session will include a
discussion of the patient’s complete medical history and a physical
examination, so that the doctor can rule out any potential contraindications
that would make mastectomy an inadvisable option. For planning purposes, the
doctor will often use radiographic imaging (X-ray or ultrasound, for example)
to evaluate tissue and structures; the plastic surgeon and the patient will
discuss whether such an examination is necessary in the patient’s particular
How do I prepare for my mastectomy?
Generally speaking, mastectomy surgery does not
require any special preparation. Patients can prepare for their personal
consultation sessions by noting down concrete questions to ask the specialists.
Patients should also talk to their psychiatrists or psychologists beforehand to
get a letter of referral, which will be required for cost reimbursement
purposes – the plastic surgeon will send it to the insurance company along with
photos taken during the consultation session. Patients who take medications or
other substances that can affect blood coagulation should discontinue them
about a week before surgery if possible. Naturally, the plastic surgeon will
discuss these types of questions more thoroughly during consultation.
The day of the operation – procedure and information
Patients are admitted to the hospital the day
before their mastectomy or two hours prior, depending on their individual
treatment plans. They consult with the plastic surgeon and the anesthesiologist
to review the plan and make sure that they are in good health. Once the
specialists have determined that no contraindications to surgery have
developed, the patient is brought into the operating area with an empty
stomach. The patient’s mammary glands are removed while the patient is under
general anesthesia. For optimum results, additional liposuction is usually
required to remove any fat deposits around the breasts. Generally speaking,
patients pay liposuction costs out of pocket.
Individual consultation and care before, during, and after your mastectomy
Are you looking for more information on mastectomy
procedures, or would you like to schedule a personal consultation at my clinic
in Zurich? I would be glad to provide you with the information you need and
explain the procedure to you in detail. Having spent many years working in
aesthetic and reconstructive plastic surgery, I know what a major step breast
removal represents for you and how hard it can be to discuss it openly, which
is why creating a friendly, confidential discussion environment is a major
priority for me. I want you to feel comfortable at my clinic, and I want you to
know that you’re in experienced, competent hands.
I look forward to meeting and assisting you!