Many things about having breast cancer are uncomfortable, but often the most shocking part of the whole ordeal is that the discomfort isn’t always over after the cancer is gone. Many women suffer from cancer-related symptoms such as lymphedema or phantom pain long after they’ve been declared cancer-free. And others deal with the mess of extra surgeries for reconstruction or a long search for the right breast prostheses. It seems no matter which treatment plan you choose, there’s always a risk that cancer will continue to impact your life for years to come.
For those women who opt to get breast prostheses, however, life could soon be a little more comfortable, because American Breast Care is rolling out a new type of breast form that will fit better than any other. Their prostheses are made with the help of 3D scans so that the contours of the finished product are exactly customized to fit the contours of the individual person who will be wearing them. Each form is completely unique, with plenty of options for shape, size, and color.
During a fitting, the client wears a comfortable bra and breast forms and has special markers placed at specific points on her body to help the camera pick up the most important dimensions of her chest. Then two 3D white-light scans will be done with the bra on—one with the client’s arms at her sides and the other with hands on the hips—and then two scans without the bra. Photographs are taken as well.
In a few weeks, the client’s breast forms will be delivered, and she’ll have another fitting session so she can learn how to properly insert them and how to clean and care for them when they’re not being worn.
Dale Cager is a breast cancer survivor who has spent 20 years searching for the perfect breast prostheses. After going through the scans and receiving her custom prostheses, she tearfully declares, “This is a winner.”
“This is so natural, as if I had never had my breasts removed at all,” she says.
See the scan in action in this video and get a peek at just how much like a real breast the results are for Dale.
Have you found a favorite breast prosthesis that makes you look and feel your best? We’d love to hear which one you picked and why!
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?