Perspectives on treatment pathways – Sirkka


Sirkka didn’t want foreign materials in her body but didn’t realize that her choice of reconstruction included a piece of mesh left in place.


It would have been good if I had, if I’d had the knowledge. A little bit more knowledge about mesh, how mesh works in your body. I guess really, I should have researched it more, but actually at the time that I went down there, I wasn’t aware that I was going to get mesh in my body. I think that was … the reason I opted for the TRAM flap*(Transverse Rectus Abdominis Muscle Flap) surgery was because I didn’t want foreign material in my body. I thought this would be my breasts built from my own body rather than anything foreign put in there. So that was a huge thing on my part, that I should have really researched this more. So I would say that do your research, look at different sites, talk to different people. I had talked to one woman who had the TRAM flap done and she was very happy with what had happened. 

Now another thing also, I forgot to mention, I said I had decided to do this because I didn’t want any foreign products in my body but when I went back for the second surgery my breasts were not, the right breast was wonderful it looks real, it feels real it’s perfect. The left breast was just a little lump and I said to the, this is done in Toronto, and I said to the doctor there, that well,” But they’re so different. I mean they’re not this isn’t breasts, this isn’t a breast.” She said “We can make the other one smaller or we can make the left one to match the right one. I said well I want breasts, I don’t want little lumps. I didn’t go through all this to have little lumps.” And she says “Well the only way we can give you a left breast is to put in an implant.” So here I resisted or I should say here I was trying to think, trying to or thinking that my breast would be built from my own body and now I have an implant anyway because they, they, she said there was no other way to give me a left breast. And I think they should have been told to me right away. I don’t think that it should have been an afterthought and when she put the implant in first of all, it was too big and she put it too high. So then I had to go back so that she could lower the implant. I kind a got fooled on that one because I said “Now I have, I have mesh in my body plus I have an implant in my body and that’s not what I was expecting.”

* TRAM flap: A section of the lower belly containing blood vessels, skin, fat and muscle is cut and used for breast reconstruction.

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