Ask the Doctor- I’m Having Pain After My Last Latissimus Flap/Implant Reconstruction. What Can I Do Now?

This week, Richard M. Kline, Jr., MD, of The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction answers your question about breast reconstruction.

Question: I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2011, and had a mastectomy on my left side followed by chemo. In 2014, my mammogram began showing tumors and I would have an ultrasound every time. This caused panic attacks and I choose to have my right breast removed because the type of cancer I had was Stage 4 Aggressive. In April 2015, I had a bilateral latissimus flat and received implants. Now I am experiencing pain across my back where I was cut and my chest gets uncomfortably tight. The site of the drainage tube is swollen and doesn’t feel good. I stopped seeing my reconstruction doctor because he did things I was not informed of. I am worried because I do not know what is going on anymore. Could you please advise me as to what might be going on or what to do?

Answer: I’m sorry you are continuing to have problems, but you are not alone.

I can’t speak about your situation specifically because I haven’t examined you, but here are some thoughts in general about patients with symptoms like yours.

There is no question that many people with implants describe symptoms such as yours. Often, there is no discernible reason why they should feel discomfort, but they do. Nonetheless, many of them feel relief when the implants are removed. This does not mean that you would or should, it is just an observation.

The latissimus flap can be done with or without dividing the nerve that makes it contract. I have known some patients with latissimus flaps done without dividing the nerve to have discomfort associated with the muscle contracting. Some have experienced relief when the nerve was subsequently divided. Obviously, I don’t know if this is your situation or not.

Sometimes people have complex, persistent pain after surgery or injury which is out of all proportion to what would be expected. This can be difficult to treat but thankfully is rare.

When evaluating a patient with symptoms like yours, we usually start with a careful history and physical evaluation. Sometimes, especially if we have concerns about implant rupture, fluid collections, infection, etc., we then get an MRI and/or CT scan Following the complete evaluation, we then decide together how to proceed.

Hope this helps at least a little. I would be happy to chat with you further by phone about your specific problem or see you in person if you can come for a visit.

Have a question about breast reconstruction or post-surgical you’d like answered from our surgical team? Just ask!

How to Have the Perfect At-Home Spa Day

There is nothing more relaxing than a day at the spa.

Not to mention, it helps you rest and unwind after a long week of work, chasing your kids around the house, or whatever else it is that you do on a weekly basis.

The only problem is that going to a professional spa can cost a lot of money.

There’s certainly nothing wrong with treating yourself every once in a while, but for most people, going for a spa treatment on a weekly basis is simply out of the budget.

For that reason, we at The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction want to share with you how to have the perfect at-home spa day.

Our at-home version is just as fun, will make you feel just as relaxed, and can be thrown together for a fraction of what a day at the actual spa would cost.

Follow these steps for a perfect at-home spa day that will leave you feeling refreshed and ready to take on the world.

Step 1: Prepare Your Favorite Beverage

Most spas will have fancy fruit-infused waters or teas available for guests to drink when they arrive for their appointment. So, to begin your at-home spa session, grab a cup of your favorite beverage—coffee, tea, juice…even wine! We don’t judge!

Step 2: Start with a Face Mask

A face mask is an inexpensive way to rejuvenate your skin and leave your face feeling fresh.

You can purchase premade masks at just about any grocery store or skin care shop for under $5. Or, if you prefer to make your own, simply mix together 1 tbs. of coconut oil with ¼ tsp. of turmeric.

This simple 2-ingredient face mask recipe is great for hydrating your skin and reducing blemishes.

Step 3: Soak Your Feet in a Footbath

From walking all over the place to being crammed in high heels, our feet take a beating every day. This is why it’s so important to give your feet a break and soak them in a footbath.

You can buy a more expensive foot bath at the store for between $60 and $100. If you’re someone who constantly has sore feet, this might be a good investment for you.

However, if you’re only planning on enjoying a good foot soak once in a blue moon, a simple bucket will work just fine. All you have to do is fill a bucket with warm water, add some Epsom salts (you can find this at the grocery store) and let your feet soak for 15-20 minutes.

If you want to get really crazy, you can also add in some essential oils. We personally love adding about 3 drops of peppermint oil into our footbaths.

Step 4: Take a Hot Bath

If more than your feet need a good soak, we recommend that you fill a tub with nice hot water and take a bath.

Be sure to dim the lights, light candles, grab your favorite book, or turn on some soothing music. It’s such a good feeling to be able to separate yourself from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and lock yourself away in a cozy warm bath for an hour or so.

If you’d like, you can add some of the Epsom salts you used in your footbath to the water. These salts are known to help ease sore muscles and help you relax. Or, if you want to do something different, use a delightful-smelling bath bomb to make your bath time a little more special.

Step 5: Finish with Polished Nails

Most ladies have a few bottles of nail polish floating around the house. But here’s the question…how often have you been able to take the time to sit down and actually use them?

Make time after your relaxing bath to end your night with a manicure or pedicure.

Put on a pair of cozy pajamas, pick your favorite nail polish color, and go to town! While your nails are drying, indulge in some senseless TV, read a magazine, or play a game on your phone. It’s all about giving yourself the time to do what makes you happy.

Do you have any at-home spa rituals you love? Share them with us in the comments below!

Our Surgeons Show Support for National Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness month. And it’s important that we take the time to remember those who have lost their lives to breast cancer, support those who are battling it, and celebrate those who have won their cancer battle.

One of the ways The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction likes to celebrate is to get involved in community events that are focused on breast cancer awareness.

This year we’ve been invited to participate in a series of Breast Cancer symposiums. We are thrilled that two of our surgeons, Dr. Craigie and Dr. Kline, will be included in the panel for these discussions.

All of the Charleston, SC, community is invited to attend these talks, and we encourage you to attend if you are able!

Check out the details below…

East Cooper Breast Cancer Symposium – October 4

The first Breast Cancer educational symposium will be held at the East Cooper Medical Center. The event will take place in the classrooms at the hospital, limiting registration to about 40 people.

During this event, a panel of medical experts will be talking about a variety of breast cancer topics, from treatment and prevention to reconstructive surgeries and life after breast cancer.

The facility will be serving boxed dinners for participants to enjoy during the panel talk, which will take place from 6:00 p.m. to around 8:00 p.m.

Space is limited, so if you’re interested in attending please call the East Cooper Medical Center at (888) 417-1377 to find out how to register for the event.

Breast Reconstruction Awareness Day Talks – October 17, 18, and 19

To celebrate Breast Reconstruction Awareness Day (BRA day), three talks on breast reconstruction will be held over the course of three days—October 17, 18, and 19.

All three events will feature medical professionals and surgeons who are active members of Roper’s breast cancer team. The topics of discussion will focus on reconstructive breast surgery.

A few featured topics include…

  • A presentation on fat grafting.
  • A discussion on Micro Autologous.
  • A talk on lymph node transfer.

The first talk will be held on Tuesday, October 17, at 6:30 p.m. at Roper Mount Pleasant in Classrooms 1, 2, and 3. For more information, click here.

The second talk will be held on Wednesday, October 18, at 6:30 p.m. at Roper Bon Secours St. Francis, Mall Classrooms 1, 2, and 3. For more information, click here.

The third talk will be held on Thursday, October 19, at 6:30 p.m. at Roper Hospital, Irene Dixon Auditorium. For more information, click here.

Please note that the same talks will be given each night, so it’s only necessary to attend one event if you have an interest in going.

On behalf of our entire staff, we wish you a happy National Breast Cancer Awareness month. And to those of you who are currently battling breast cancer, our thoughts are with you.

Do you have any National Breast Cancer Awareness month activities on your schedule that you’re excited about?

Share them with us in the comments below!

Finding Beauty After Breast Cancer: Register for a Free Class at Sephora

 

 Our surgeons and staff at The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction know firsthand how difficult a battle with breast cancer can be.

From the moment you’re diagnosed, everything changes. Your emotional, mental, and psychological health is instantly impacted. And throughout your breast cancer journey, your physical appearance is also bound to change.

This transformation can unfortunately leave a lot of woman no longer feeling confident in their own skin.

While we believe that all women—no matter their journey—are beautiful, we also know that a little pampering and some fun with makeup can go a long way in making you feel radiant and confident.

With National Breast Cancer Awareness month in full swing, there are numerous educational talks, fundraisers, and events going on. If you’re in the Charleston, SC, area, we’d like to personally invite you to a special event at Sephora on King Street.

We are joining forces with Sephora in order to promote their FREE Brave Beauty class for women who have battled cancer.

The event will take place on Sunday, October 29, at 6:30 p.m. at the Sephora on King Street. The official address is 289 King Street, Charleston, SC 29401.

This 90-minute Brave Beauty class is designed to help you discover techniques and products that address the visible effects of your cancer treatments.

During this event, you’ll be given skincare tips tailored to your needs and then will be matched with Color IQ and receive step-by-step instructions for a creating a radiant complexion, natural-looking brows, and defined eyes.

If you’re interested in attending, we encourage you to check out this awesome video from Sephora that features cancer survivor Emily as she explains why attending a Brave Beauty class is a great way to celebrate how beautiful you truly are.

Watch the video here!

If you’re interested in signing up, please contact us at The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction to register, and we will pass your information along to the event host.

You can get in touch with us here.

Do you have any tips or tricks for feeling confident and radiant after a battle with cancer?

Share them with us in the comments below!

3 Delicious Fall-Inspired Apple Recipes

It’s that time of year…apple season!

There’s truly nothing better taking a trip to the apple orchard (or grocery store if you don’t have an orchard near you), handpicking a variety of apples, and then taking them home to cook up a delicious recipe.

Even better, apples are filled with antioxidants and plenty of dietary fiber, so you don’t have to feel guilty when cooking with this sweet, crisp fruit.

Cooking with apples is one of our favorite things about the fall season. And for that reason, we thought it would be fun to share some of our favorite recipes with you.

Check them out below…

Roasted Pork Tenderloin with Apples Recipe

When you think of cooking with apples, chances are you think about dessert—apple pies, cakes, etc. But apples also pair extremely well with savory foods, especially pork. Give this roasted pork tenderloin with apples recipe a try!

Ingredients:

  • 2 pork tenderloins (about 1 1/2-pounds each)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, plus more as needed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, plus more as needed
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 apples, cored and sliced (we like Granny Smith, Golden Delicious or Braeburn)
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 1 cup chicken stock, see our homemade chicken stock recipe
  • 1 tablespoon butter

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Trim each tenderloin of any silver skin (this can be tough when cooked, just use a small sharp knife and slide the blade under and outward to remove it).
  3. Pat pork dry with paper towels and then rub with 1 tablespoon of the oil and 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt.
  4. Heat a tablespoon of oil in a heavy-bottomed oven-safe skillet over medium heat. When the oil is hot and shimmers, add the pork tenderloins and cook, turning occasionally, until evenly browned all over; about 12 minutes. Transfer to a large plate or cutting board. (The pork will not be cooked through).
  5. Keep the pan used to sear the pork on the stove over medium heat. Check the pan, if it looks dry, add 2 to 3 teaspoons of additional oil. (If there is fat left in the pan from cooking the pork, there is no need to add additional oil.)
  6. Add the apples and onions and then cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned around edges, about 5 minutes. Stir in 1 teaspoon of thyme.
  7. Use a pastry brush (or use your fingers) to rub the seared pork all over with the mustard, 2 teaspoons of thyme, and the black pepper.
  8. Place the seared pork tenderloins on top of the apples and onions, and then slide into the oven. Roast 10 to 15 minutes or until an internal thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers between 145 and 150 degrees F. Transfer the pork to a large plate and cover with aluminum foil. Let rest about 10 minutes.
  9. While the pork rests, place the pan with apples and onions back onto the stove and turn heat to medium. Add chicken stock and use a wooden spoon to scrape the pan, lifting any brown bits from the bottom. Bring to a simmer and cook until reduced by half. Add butter and stir until melted.

Recipe source: http://www.inspiredtaste.net/21117/perfect-roasted-pork-tenderloin-recipe-with-apples/

Dutch Apple Pie with Crumb Topping Recipe

We simply couldn’t have an apple recipe blog post without a recipe for an apple pie. This Dutch apple pie uses a crumb topping instead of a pastry shell topping, and boy, is it delicious! Here’s how to make it…

Ingredients:

Crust

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon shortening
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons cold water

Filling

  • 8 cups sliced cored peeled apples
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Topping

  • ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup Gold Medal™ all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar

Directions:

  1. In medium bowl, mix 1 cup flour and the salt. Cut in shortening, using pastry blender until particles are size of small peas. Sprinkle with cold water, 1 tablespoon at a time, tossing with fork until all flour is moistened and pastry almost leaves side of bowl (1 to 2 teaspoons more water can be added if necessary).
  2. Gather pastry into a ball. Shape into flattened round on lightly floured surface. Wrap flattened round of pastry in plastic wrap, and refrigerate about 45 minutes or until dough is firm and cold, yet pliable.
  3. Heat oven to 400°F. On surface sprinkled with flour, using floured rolling pin, roll pastry dough into circle 2 inches larger than 9-inch pie plate. Fold pastry into fourths; place in pie plate. Unfold and ease into plate, pressing firmly against bottom and side and being careful not to stretch pastry, which will cause it to shrink when baked. Trim overhanging edge of pastry 1 inch from rim of pie plate. Fold and roll pastry under, even with plate; flute as desired.
  4. In large bowl, toss filling ingredients. Pour into pie plate, mounding apples toward center.
  5. In medium bowl, use pastry blender or fingers to mix butter, 1 cup flour and the brown sugar until a crumb forms. Sprinkle evenly over top of pie. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon granulated sugar on top.
  6. Bake 45 to 55 minutes or until pie crust and crumb topping are deep golden brown and filling begins to bubble. Transfer to cooling rack to cool.

Recipe Source: https://www.bettycrocker.com/recipes/dutch-apple-pie/815d821f-058d-4177-93be-e157390e947b

Apple Cinnamon Ice Cream Recipe

Ice cream lovers, rejoice…we have a recipe for apple cinnamon ice cream, and we just know you’re going to love it! Put down the pumpkin spice latte, and instead, indulge in this sweet, creamy treat that’s perfect for the fall! Check out the recipe now.

Ingredients:

Ice Cream Base

  • 2-1/4 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Cinnamon Apple Swirl

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 large apples, peeled, cored, and chopped into small, bit-sized pieces
  • 1/4 cup (packed) brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

Directions:

  1. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the cream, milk, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and salt until well-combined. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours until thoroughly chilled.
  2. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat. Toss the apples with the brown sugar and spices and add to the skillet. Cook, stirring often, until the apples are tender, about 2-3 mins. Remove from the heat and let cool. Cover and refrigerate along with the cream base.
  3. Prior to making the ice cream, whisk the cream base a few times, and pour into an 1-1/2 quart capacity ice cream machine. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions, and churn until the ice cream is frozen and fluffy, about the consistency of soft-serve (generally 20-25 minutes). About three to five minutes before the ice cream is ready, or when the ice cream looks like it is mostly set up, carefully pour in the cinnamon-apple mixture, and continue churning.
  4. Spoon the ice cream into freezer-safe containers, and for a firmer texture, cover and freeze for an hour or two.

Recipe Source: http://www.forkknifeswoon.com/apple-cinnamon-ice-cream/

Do you have a favorite apple-inspired recipe?

Share it with us in the comments below!

Flap Reconstruction Surgery: Important Stats and Abstract Information

If you’ve had breast cancer and are considering reconstruction surgery, it’s possible that one of the options you may be looking into is flap reconstruction surgery.

Breast reconstruction utilizing “flap” techniques are procedures where body tissue is used to reconstruct the shape of your breast after surgery. While it’s a relatively common type of reconstructive surgery these days, we feel it’s important that you should learn as much as possible about the benefits and risks, and discuss them with your doctor before you have the procedure.

That’s why we at The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction are always looking for better ways to educate and inform our patients before a decision.

One way we ensure our patients have access to the latest in medicine and medical technology is to have our surgeons and staff constantly learning, researching, and writing about their findings.

In fact, some of our latest research on reconstructive flap surgery was recently submitted to the American Association of Plastic Surgeons by our Dr. Kline. This specific abstract documented the success rate of our reconstructive flap surgeries with regard to the role of autogenous microvascular breast reconstruction in the community.

Check it out…

Abstract

PURPOSE: To present the continuing role of autogenous microvascular breast reconstruction in the community

METHODS: 1393 free perforator flaps for breast reconstruction were performed by two surgeons from October, 2003 to October, 2016. All flaps were performed in two community hospitals. Types of flaps included DIEP unilateral (122 flaps), DIEP simultaneous bilateral (866 flaps), DIEP bipedicle (106 flaps), sGAP unilateral (55 flaps), sGAP simultaneous bilateral (202 flaps), iGAP unilateral (2 flaps), iGAP simultaneous bilateral (18 flaps), PAP unilateral (5 flaps), PAP bilateral (10 flaps), SIEA unilateral (3 flaps), SIEA simultaneous bilateral (2 flaps), and TFL perforator (1 flap). The series includes a large number of both immediate and delayed reconstructions, prior failed reconstructions, and patients with a history of radiation.

RESULTS: Overall flap survival rate was 98.2%. DIEP survival rate was 99.1%. sGAP survival rate was 95.7%. No primary unilateral flaps were lost, and no bilateral losses occurred. Including those patients whose initial flaps failed, 99% of patients were ultimately successfully reconstructed with autogenous tissue.

CONCLUSION: Implant-based reconstruction is an appropriate initial choice for many patients, but autogenous microsurgical reconstruction still remains an excellent option, whether as an initial choice, or for patients with a prior history of failed reconstruction. With proper preparation and institutional support, perforator flap breast reconstruction can be performed with a high degree of success in a community hospital setting.

On top of the abstract, our physicians—Richard M. Kline Jr., M.D. and James E. Craigie MD—also wrote the chapter on GAP (buttock) flaps for the book Perforator Flaps for Breast Reconstruction.

Check out the book chapter here.

As we mentioned earlier, we are passionate about continuing to learn, receive training, and interact with the scientific community to ensure we provide our patients with the safest, most advanced care.

And, while we’re doing our job to make sure we’re properly training our staff and staying up-to-date with the latest in medical technology, there’s one thing we encourage you to do as well—always ask for medical procedure stats.

Much like the abstract we provided above, your doctor should be able to provide you with stats on the procedures he or she conducts.

When patients come to us and ask questions on success rates, we can happily tell them the different percentage rates of success for the various procedures we provide. Equipping our patients with this information empowers them to make wise, educated decisions about their own health.

So, please, before you move ahead with a specific procedure, ask your doctor for the stats. If they have a high success rate with their surgeries, then you’re in the right place. If they don’t, it’s time for you to find another doctor.

We wish you the best as you move forward with any new procedure you may need!

Did you find the book chapter insightful? Let us know what you learned and what you thought was helpful to know in the comments below!

5 Tips for Taking the Stress out of Summer Vacations

Summerkids are off school, adults have vacation time, the weather is beautiful, and it’s the perfect time to take a much-deserved vacation. Yet, unfortunately, many people’s fantasy of a relaxing vacation (sitting on a white sand beach with a drink in hand) doesn’t always work out as planned.

That’s right.

Screaming kids, forgetting to pack your swimsuit, or not being able to find an affordable plane ticket are all things that can easily ruin a vacation. Yikes!

At The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction, we know how important it is for you (and your family) to rest, relax, and recharge. Which is why we’ve put together 5 tips that we hope will help you take the stress out of your vacation this year.

Check them out now…

Create a Packing List

Every travel destination comes with different packing needs. This is why it’s so important to take time to create a packing list to ensure you pack the appropriate attire.

Trust us, you wouldn’t want to make it all the way to Alaska and realize that you forgot your winter coat—Yes! Even in the summer months!

And just as every travel destination has different packing needs, so does every member of your family if you’re traveling with your significant other and/or children.

Heaven forbid you forget to bring your 3-year-old’s teddy bear for nighttime, and he doesn’t sleep the entire vacation. That’s stressful and no fun for anyone!

Ensure you don’t forget the essentials, and create a packing list. Review the list with whomever you are traveling with, and then check off each item on the list as you put it into your suitcase.

Invite an Extra Set of Hands to Help You on Your Trip

Inviting a friend or family member to go on your vacation to help if you have small children is a wonderful idea for many reasons.

Reason 1: If you have multiple small children, you already know how challenging traveling can be. When you have a second set of hands, you’ll have someone to sit in the backseat with child #1 when he needs help starting a movie on his iPad so you can drive in peace.

Reason 2: Safety. Parking lots, large crowds, pools/beaches, etc., are all dangerous for children. And if you have more than one child, it can be hard to keep an eye on everything to ensure everyone is safe and sound. Having a second set of eyes is a good way to keep everyone safe and happy so you can enjoy your vacation.

Reason 3: It’s nice to have the company of another adult. If you’re a single parent or are just traveling alone with your children, you know how mind-numbing constant conversations about your child’s favorite cartoon show can be. Bringing someone along with you makes it easier to have enjoyable adult conversations, whether you’re driving in the car, on a plane, or sitting at the beach.

Plan Ahead

Some people say spontaneity is the spice of life. Yet, those who went to NYC to see Hamilton without purchasing tickets in advance and missed the show would probably disagree.

If you know for sure that you want to do a specific activity, see a certain show, or go out to a special dinner, be sure to book everything in advance.

This not only takes the stress out of having to book everything last minute while you’re trying to enjoy your vacation, but it also helps ensure that you get to do the things you want to do while on vacation.

Booking ahead is also a great idea for hotels and airlines. When you plan in advance, you can watch rates and will most likely get a better deal on the cost of lodging or transportation instead of waiting to the last minute.

Provide Adequate Sleep/Rest Time

On vacation, people tend to get thrown off their normal schedules. And while adults can get moody if they don’t get enough sleep, lack of rest can be extremely detrimental for kids. We all know how stressful crying, screaming kids can be!

The good news is that there’s a simple solution to this problem. All you’ve got to do is schedule rest breaks into your day to avoid crankiness or meltdowns.

A simple hour nap or quiet break in the middle of the day can do wonders for children. You may also find, that as an adult, you also this break to relax amidst the hustle and bustle of your vacation as well.

Go into Your Vacation with the Right Mindset

It’s so easy to fantasize about the perfect vacation. After all, you’ve work so hard all year, and you clearly deserve the best vacation ever.

While it’s ok to expect the best out of your next vacation, it’s also important to have the right mindset. Not every vacation will be perfect. It may rain on your beach day. Tickets might be sold out to the dinner show you want to see. You may get a tummy ache from eating too much ice cream and have to cancel your fancy dinner reservations.

Stuff happens…and some people let the minor hiccups in a vacation ruin their entire trip. Don’t let this happen to you.

Go into your vacation with the mindset that you’re going to make the best of whatever happens on your trip. If it rains on your beach day, maybe it’s a good day to learn something new at a museum. And if you get a stomach ache from eating too much ice cream, that stinks—but at least you got to eat dessert for lunch that day! Score!

The key is flexibility. If one plan doesn’t work, have a plan B and try something different. Who knows, you might end up trying a new activity or seeing a new sight that becomes the highlight of your trip!

Go into your vacation with a mindset that you’re going to enjoy yourself no matter what happens. Travel delays, bad weather, cranky kids, etc., can wreak havoc on your trip, unless you are willing to roll with the punches and resort to a plan B if necessary. Flexibility is key.

Do you have any tips for taking the stress out of summer vacations? Share them with us in the comments below!

 

Gratitude: Why You Don’t Need to Find a Pot of Gold to Feel Lucky This Month

 During the month of March, people often think of lucky four-leaf clovers, chasing leprechauns, and finding a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow. It’s the month of luck after all!

Sure, finding a pot of treasure or stumbling upon a stash of golden horseshoes would be lucky, but the chances of that happening—unless you’re a treasure hunter–are slim to none.

That’s ok.

At The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction, we believe it’s best to create your own luck, so that every day can be a great day!

Keep reading to discover some of our favorite ways you can remind yourself just how lucky you really are and show gratitude for everything you have.

Reflect on the Good Things in Life

It’s really easy to get caught reflecting on the bad things in life…like being diagnosed with cancer, losing a loved one, or being stressed out at work.

Yet, when we take a minute and begin to reflect on the good things in life, we realize there is often more good than bad happening in our lives.

Think about how lucky you are to have loving friends and family in your life that are there to support you whenever you need them. If you don’t have a lot of close friends or family, perhaps you have a pet that is always available for a snuggle.

Do you have a home, a warm bed to sleep in, and food to eat? Sadly, there are many people in the world that don’t. We consider ourselves lucky to have those things.

Chances are you’re reading this blog post from a computer or a smartphone. Just the fact that you have access to technology is very lucky! Not to mention other luxuries like electricity, a TV to watch, the ability to call friends and family via your cell phone, etc.

You see, when you start thinking about how many good things you have in your life, you don’t need “leprechaun magic” to realize just how good you have it!

Volunteer or Help Those in Need

Sometimes the best way to realize how lucky we are is put ourselves in the same room as those who aren’t as lucky.

The best way to do this is volunteering.

Working a soup kitchen is a great way to remind ourselves how lucky we are to have food in our stomach.

Volunteering at a homeless shelter is a wonderful way to remind ourselves how fortunate we are to have our own beds to sleep in.

And spending time with sick children or adults in a hospital is the best way to show us how lucky we are for our good health—regardless of the health issues you’ve faced in the past.

Volunteer for a cause that is close to your heart, and I promise you won’t need to find a pot of gold to feel rich in your blessings.

Create Your Own Luck

Good fortune is often the result of a lot of hard work.

Think about it…many millionaires who own thriving businesses started with nothing, working out of their garages. But, with hard work, they now live a very fortunate lifestyle.

If you feel as if you’ve been stuck in a rut without any good luck, it’s time to roll up your sleeves, follow your dreams, and create your own good luck for the future.

Have the tools and resources you need to start your dream business? Do it!

Need to finish your college degree to help make a comfortable life for you and your family? Hit the books!

Do you dream of traveling the world? Start saving a little money each month to make that dream a reality.

With a little hard work and planning, you’ll have the potential to do whatever you set your mind to—how lucky is that!

How do you make your own luck? Let us know in the comments below!

Our resident Canadian Geese are back and are expecting!

 

It’s  “Baby Watch” 2016 at The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction!!!

 

 Meet Edith and Archie. These beautiful geese reside outside of our Mt. Pleasant office.  Edith began resting on her nest just a few weeks ago with her mate Archie right by her side protecting her and their eggs from harm.  Believe me, Archie will let you know when you get too close for comfort.  This picture was taken while he was warning me!    

We’ll keep an eye out on them over the next few months and share their progress aloing with lots of photos once the babies arrive.    

Keep watching & Happy Spring!!  

 

Gail

Our residents Edith and Archie                         archie goose

October 15: BRA Day USA

BRA day usa ribbon

BRA DAY USA
Closing the Loop on Breast Cancer

It’s a fact: many women eligible for breast reconstruction following cancer surgery are not being properly informed of their options.

The Breast Reconstruction Awareness Campaign–a collaborative effort between the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, The Plastic Surgery Foundation, plastic surgeons specializing in breast reconstruction, nurse navigators, corporate partners, and breast cancer support groups–hopes to change this.

Statistics show:

  • Eighty-nine percent of women want to see successful breast reconstruction surgery results before undergoing cancer treatment.
  • Less than a quarter (23 percent) of women know the wide range of breast reconstruction options available.
  • Only 22 percent of women are familiar with the quality of outcomes that can be expected.
  • Only 19 percent of women understand that the timing of their treatment for breast cancer and the timing of their decision to undergo reconstruction greatly impacts their options and results.

 

Breast cancer does not discriminate, and while every journey is unique, all breast cancer patients have the right to know their reconstruction options. Click here to meet our team and learn more about our practice, success stories, and natural reconstruction surgery.