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FORCE's eXamining the Relevance of Articles for You (XRAY) program looks behind the headlines of cancer news to help you understand what the research means for you. XRAY is a reliable source of hereditary cancer research-related news and information.
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Relevance: Medium-High

Strength of Science: Medium-High

Research Timeline: Post Approval

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Study : Patient outcomes and experiences of going flat

Most relevant for: Women considering mastectomy without breast reconstruction.

Some patients with early-stage breast cancer or those considering risk-reducing surgery may choose mastectomy without reconstruction. This is often referred to as “going flat.” The results of this study suggest that surgeons play a significant role in supporting a patient’s decision to go flat. (3/23/2021)

Este artículo está disponible en español.

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Relevance: High

Research Timeline: Post Approval

Guideline : FDA asks Allergan to recall certain textured breast implants

Most relevant for: Women with, or considering breast reconstruction with implants

On July 25, 2019, the Food and Drug Administration requested that breast implant manufacturer Allergan recall its BIOCELL textured implants and expanders due to an association with a rare type of lymphoma called Breast Implant Associated Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma or BIA-ALCL. The FDA does not recommend removing implants for people who do not have disease symptoms. This XRAYS review updates information about this FDA recall. (7/29/19)

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Relevance: High

Quality of Writing: Medium-High

Personal Story : Juliet's story: No reconstruction is a post-mastectomy option

Most relevant for: Women who have had or are considering mastectomy without reconstruction

In a March 2018 article from breastcancercare.org, Juliet conveys her personal experience with a breast cancer diagnosis and her decision to not have her breasts reconstructed after her mastectomy. She details the emotional complexity of her thought process and the empowerment she felt in her decisions. (5/24/18)

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Relevance: Medium-High

Strength of Science: Medium-High

Research Timeline: Post Approval

Study : What is the risk of breast cancer recurrence after nipple-sparing mastectomy?

Most relevant for: Breast cancer patients who are considering or have had a nipple sparing mastectomy

Nipple-sparing mastectomy (NSM) offers better cosmetic results for women who have immediate breast reconstruction (at the same time as their mastectomy). Over the past decade, NSM has gained popularity among surgeons and patients. Studies show that women who keep their own nipples have higher rates of satisfaction and psychological well-being after mastectomy and reconstruction compared to women who lose their nipples. However, little data exists on the long-term risk of recurrence following NSM. New research adds to a growing body of evidence suggesting that risk of recurrence is low after NSM in carefully selected patients with breast cancer. (1/25/18)

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Relevance: Medium-High

Research Timeline: Post Approval

Study : FDA report claims women with breast implants may be at risk for rare cancer

Most relevant for: Women who had or are consideration breast reconstruction with implants

THIS INFORMATION HAS BEEN UPDATED. The FDA issued an update in March, 2018 about Breast Implant Associated Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma (BIA-ALCL). This was covered in a more recent XRAY review. On 07/25/19, the FDA announced a recall of Allergan BIOCELL textured implants and expanders, due to their association with BIA-ALCL. This was also covered in a more recent XRAY review.

Recent headlines highlighted an FDA report stating that patients with breast implants may be at increased risk for a rare type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma. What is the scientific evidence behind this claim? (4/21/17)

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Relevance: Medium-High

Quality of Writing: Medium-High

Article : After mastectomy: reconstruct or not?

Most relevant for: Woman who are facing mastectomy

Today, more women know they can have breast reconstruction after removing their breasts for cancer treatment or risk reduction. But what about choosing not to undergo reconstruction? Roni Caryn Rabin writes about the experiences of women who decide against reconstruction in her New York Times piece “‘Going Flat’ After Breast Cancer.” (12/14/16)

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Relevance: Medium

Strength of Science: Medium

Study : More patients with invasive breast cancer opting for double mastectomies

Most relevant for: Women diagnosed with breast cancer who are recommended to undergo a single mastectomy

Women diagnosed with invasive breast cancer have a number of surgical options. They can have breast-conserving surgery (lumpectomy) with radiation, a unilateral (single) mastectomy to remove only the tissue from the cancerous breast, or a contralateral prophylactic mastectomy (CPM), which removes both breasts. A new study finds that more women are opting for CPM, yet overall survival for these patients is not increasing. (5/3/2016)

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