Mastectomy Products FAQs

What products are available to help out a breast cancer survivor?

There are lots of products available to make your life easier and to feel whole again. The first and most important products would be a breast prosthesis and mastectomy bra. These products, fitted well, by a certified Mastectomy shop will restore your shape and confidence immensely. Next, consider a variety of fashion apparel with built-in pockets to hold your breast form/s, camisoles, fashion tops and night wear. In addition, there are plenty of swimsuit styles that have been designed specifically for mastectomy clients.

Am I always going to feel disfigured?

You will always have some residual scars but most should heal up nicely. With the surgery now in your rear view mirror, your life will start to return to normal. Silhouette Mastectomy has found that clients who have a great fitting breast prostheses and a complement of pretty mastectomy bras, will feel like they have their femininity back after short a period of time. Returning your silhouette to its former self, will greatly improve your confidence and outlook on life.

Is there something comfortable that I can wear immediately after my surgery?
Yes, there are a couple of options: first is a Post Surgical Camisole that is designed specifically for this use.

Post Surgical Camisole design features:
• Designed with ultra soft cotton
• A snug but non-restrictive fit
• Smooth interior side seams offer comfort to sensitive skin
• The neckline of the camisole stretches wide for easy step-in-entry
• An inside band holds removable drain pouch/s securely in-place
• Cotton pockets hold a pre-form or leisure form (light weight fiber fill puff)
• Included with the camisole are 2X fiber fill post surgical forms + 2 drain pouches
• Wide range of sizes: Xs- 4XL

If you find a camisole too restrictive or too hot to wear, a second option is a Post Surgical Mastectomy Bra that is designed specifically for use immediately after surgery


Do I need to purchase a prosthetic after my surgery, or can I go without a prosthetic?
Some breast cancer survivors do not want to wear a prosthetic, their zeal for life has gone and they will just cocoon in a nice soft sweater or heavier top. This is understandable for a little while. In time, it is critical that you be fitted with a proper weighted prosthetic. This prosthetic does many things: it will renew your confidence immensely, and just as important, it will balance your upper body. With a single mastectomy, it has been found that most if not all women will tend to hunch or lean slightly to one side in compensation (unconsciously). Over time this will cause your spine to twist and will cause all sorts of back problems. A properly fitted prosthetic will balance your upper body and help prevent this.

How good is a good fit? How can I tell if it is acceptable?
There are lots of mastectomy fitting shops out there, but unfortunately, not all are skilled at restoring your figure. The best test for you to evaluate your mastectomy fit is as follows:

1. Put on your mastectomy bra with your breast prosthesis (or both if you have a double)
2. Put on a soft camisole
3. Stand in front of a mirror and close your eyes
4. Feel both of your breasts (prosthesis and/or real) through the camisole
5. You should find that the shape, size, fullness, drape and softness are the same on both sides. Trust your touch – both sides should match very, very close however, you will always be able to notice very small differences
6. Open your eyes and observe your shape – it should be consistent on both sides and symmetrical – again for breast shape, size, fullness and drape.
7. If done well, you will have a hard time noticing the differences and so will your spouse/partner or friends!

Post Surgery Mastectomy Bra features:
• Front or rear closure clasps to ensure it is easy to put on
• Ultra soft cotton
• Soft cotton breast form pouches
• Removable drain pouch can be attached to lower band
• Padded, stretch fabric straps with front fasteners for easy access
• Wide range of sizes: Xs-4XL

The Post surgery Bras are so comfortable that they are fondly called: “sleeper bras” and many ladies will wear these almost 24/7 for the first number of weeks, since they are so comforting to wear.

When should I get fitted for a prosthetic or lumpectomy form?
You can get fitted for a prosthetic once your surgical site is well healed. There should be no signs of bleeding and preferably, all swelling should be gone.

Why do I need a mastectomy bra, can’t I just put my breast prosthesis in a standard bra?
Mastectomy bras are designed with ultra soft cotton pockets to securely hold your breast form in place to prevent it from falling out. The pockets also keep the back of the breast form from making direct contact with your skin, which may irritate it. Additionally, mastectomy bras are wire free to prevent any skin irritation. These bras are uniquely designed in every respect to ensure that they are ultimately comfortable.

Can I wear a “Knitted” or handmade prosthetic to pad out my bra?
During the first week or so after surgery, you may be ok to wear a handmade breast filler, however, in the long term this will cause many problems. Your body is designed to be balanced and when you have a single mastectomy, this balance will be changed. If the balance of your body is not returned to normal, you are likely to have twisting of your spine over time resulting in back and shoulder issues that are hard to correct.

Can I recover any of the costs for Mastectomy products purchased?
Yes, it is possible that you will be covered through BC Fair Pharmacare or if you have extended medical coverage. We recommend that you read our article on Medical coverage. You should beware that you must be fitted and purchase from a registered Mastectomy shop, or you will not be eligible with BC Fair Phamacare to receive a refund.

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