Shared Decision Making Necessary For Breast Reconstruction

By: Courtney Floyd


What is shared decision making? How is it useful in breast reconstruction?

A recent study published by JAMA Surgery shows the minority of patients having mastectomy in a single academic center made a "high-quality" decision about breast reconstruction.  

The study surveyed 126 women planning to undergo mastectomy for stage I to III breast cancers. 

They asked women questions about their knowledge on risks of reconstruction and the effects of radiation treatment. The study survey also asked how patients wanted to look with or without clothes and acceptable recovery time.

Based on the study results, only 43% of patients made "high-quality" reconstructive choices--meaning they were informed of their options and the risks associated then proceeded with the treatment that was aligned with their preferences.

What's the take away?

Shared Decision Making is key to a successful breast reconstruction journey!  At PRMA, we believe every patient has the right to be informed of all their breast reconstruction options and the pros and cons of each. We also believe patients should be given all options before a mastectomy so immediate breast reconstruction can be considered for those who are candidates. Risks associate with all surgeries should be discusses as well as expected recovery time. 

There is no "right" choice for breast reconstruction.  Every individual's needs are different and so are their reconstructive journeys. 

Our goal is to ensure each patient makes the right decision for them!  We believe shared decision making is the key to patients feeling confident in their breast reconstruction results. 

What is shared decision making? How is it useful in breast reconstruction?

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