Screening after mastectomy and reconstruction?

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Question from NGR: What is the latest advice about having a mammogram and/or ultrasound after mastectomy? I had reconstruction with tissue expanders and will have the final saline implants placed in October.
Answers - Generosa Grana, M.D., F.A.C.P There is no recommendation for any type of screening after a mastectomy and reconstruction, be it tissue reconstruction or expander reconstruction. In particular, when one does tissue reconstruction, if one were to do a mammogram, one could see calcifications, which are often related to fat necrosis. Finding such calcifications would lead to anxiety and further procedures that are needless. So currently, the recommendation in the setting of a mastectomy is to rely on clinical exam and to pursue imaging only when symptoms warrant it.

The Ask-the-Expert Online Conference called Updates From the 2008 ASCO Annual Meeting featured Generosa Grana, M.D., F.A.C.P. and Carol Kaplan, M.D. answering your questions about the latest research advances on screening, treatment, side effects, and more.

Editor's Note: This conference took place in June 2008.

The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of Breastcancer.org. A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.

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