Post Mastectomy Fitting
Whether you've had a mastectomy or breast conserving surgery, you might be struggling to regain your confidence and accept your new body image. Globe Drug can help! Our trained fitter will work with you to find the right solution for your situation. Jamie has been taught which products do best with different surgery types, and how to handle special circumstances.
What To Expect At A Post-Mastectomy Fitting
Approximately six to eight weeks after breast surgery will be a good time to see our trained post-mastectomy fitter - Jamie. What are some of the things to expect during your fitting? If you've had a mastectomy you should be able to wear a weighted prosthesis at this time since your incision should be healed. If you experienced breast conserving surgery you will also benefit from a post-mastectomy fitting as there are partial prostheses to help fill in the missing portion of your breast and provide symmetry. Medicare and most private insurance plans have coverage for breast prostheses and bras. If you are in doubt about your coverage, call the number on your insurance card and inquire. Some policies have network provider restrictions to consider that can influence coverage benefits.
The Fitting Process
The fitting will be conducted with dignity and privacy.
- The fitter will first assess the condition of the skin at the mastectomy site. There should be no drainage or open wounds at the surgery site, or incision. Either of these conditions would require permission from your physician before proceeding.
- The fitter will determine the proper bra size by taking measurements at strategic points on the chest wall and around the rib cage. The fit of the bra is crucial to how well the prosthesis will be tolerated, and how natural the fit will be. Mastectomy bras today are pretty and feminine while providing the support needed to keep the prosthesis in the correct position. Although it is not mandatory to use a mastectomy bra with a breast prosthesis, it is recommended.
- Next is the prosthesis recommendation. The fitter will note the
shape and drape of the existing breast and try a prosthesis that
best approximates those dimensions. Prostheses come in
many shapes such as teardrop, triangle, heart shaped and
more. Some taper the material into the underarm area to fill in
missing tissue there. Some prostheses are symmetrical,
meaning they can be worn on either side, while others are
asymmetrical and are side specific. For women who have lost both breasts, the fitter will make suggestions for prostheses that are flattering to the patient's body dimensions.
- The fitter will place a soft drape or smock on you and show you in the mirror how you look with the product chosen. At this point you should let the fitter know if you are happy with the results or if you want to try another product. It's important to be honest about how you feel and look.
- Yearly visits to our fitter are a good idea. Your body may change in response to hormonal and weight fluctuations. The natural breast will also change in response to these factors, and a different prosthesis may be needed to maintain symmetry.
- Before leaving, instructions on use and care as well as the retailer's return policy will be given to you.