Study Shows Breast Reconstruction is on the Rise in the US

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Breast reconstructive surgery is on the rise.

A new study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology states breast cancer reconstructive surgery is on the rise in the U.S. Researchers from the University of Michigan, University of Texas and the Swan Center For Plastic Surgery reviewed a data set from the MarketScan database to come up with their findings.

Researchers analyzed the cases of more than 20,000 women who previously underwent a mastectomy. The median age of the participants was 51. The results showed that from 1998 to 2007, breast reconstructive surgery increased from 46 to 63 percent. In that same time period, the number of bilateral (double) mastectomies increased by 3 percent.

The researchers also discovered that the rate at which women had breast reconstruction varied based on their geographic location. Additionally, the density of practicing plastic surgeons in the region played a part in whether or not women underwent the reconstructive surgical procedure. 

Even though breast reconstruction is on the rise, some breast cancer survivors have been opting out of surgery. A number of women have been getting tattoos in place of reconstruction to empower themselves during their breast cancer journey.

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