This Breast Cancer Previvor Wasn’t Willing to Settle for What Doctors Told Her — And You Shouldn’t Either


Tamara Donovan is a breast cancer previvor. She tested positive for the BRCA2 gene mutation that had caused several of her family members to get cancer and significantly increased her chances of getting breast cancer at some point in her life as well. Tamara opens up about her decision to be proactive, and go ahead with a mastectomy and breast reconstruction.

She began doing her research and talking to local doctors as soon as she knew she had the mutation. She wanted to have a double mastectomy to prevent her from getting cancer in the first place, but she also wasn’t willing to settle for anything less than her original breast size and nipples, a barely visible scar, and no implant.

Local doctors told her what she was asking for was impossible. Her skin was too thin, and she didn’t have enough fat around her abdomen to perform the surgery she had requested, which would use body fat from other locations to recreate her breasts. It was impossible, they said.

But Tamara wasn’t willing to give up. She had worked hard on her body and knew there had to be someone who could help. And there was.

Check out the video below to learn more about Tamara’s family history and previvor journey, as well as how the surgery turned out for her!

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Elizabeth Nelson is a wordsmith, an alumna of Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, a four-leaf-clover finder, and a grammar connoisseur. She has lived in west Michigan since age four but loves to travel to new (and old) places. In her free time, she. . . wait, what’s free time?
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