Friday, May 23, 2008
(Simple mastectomy with axillary clearance and immediate breast reconstruction using free transfer TRAM flap)
This is a picture taken during one of my cancer surgeries. We were removing a cancerous breast (mastectomy and axillary clearance) and immediately reconstructing a 'new breast' using the abdominal wall muscle (free TRAM-flap). You can see me (using a magnifying operating glass) doing the mastectomy, and the plastic surgeon harvesting the TRAM flap simultaneously. My part usually takes 2 hours but the plastic surgeon takes another 6 to 8 hours. Patients having mastectomy with immediate breast reconstruction were usually much happier as their 'body contour' is maintained. They didn't feel 'mutilated' after the surgery. I am hoping that with the availability of this type of surgery, Malaysian patients should not be delaying their treatment for fear of loosing their 'womenhood'. And of course we practise breast conservative surgery for early diseases.