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Finally Happy: Double Mastectomy and Implant Reconstruction with Nipple Tattoo

Real Talk

March 27, 2024

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Illustration by Brittany England

Illustration by Brittany England

by The Bezzy Editorial Team

•••••

Medically Reviewed by:

Faith Selchick, DNP, AOCNP

•••••

by The Bezzy Editorial Team

•••••

Medically Reviewed by:

Faith Selchick, DNP, AOCNP

•••••

Her implants settled into place, and now she has more lingerie than she did before breast cancer.

  • Procedure: double mastectomy, reconstruction without nipple
  • Reconstruction immediately postmastectomy: yes
  • Year of procedure: 2018
  • Age: 65
  • Ethnicity: white

This article contains graphic, intimate images of a postsurgery body. The photos have been generously shared by a breast cancer survivor so that others can benefit from uncensored visual information that may help them make important surgical decisions for themselves.

I was pretty shocked after my exchange surgery for implants. My reconstructive surgeon over-filled areas with grafted fat, so the day after the surgery, my ‘foobs’ looked huge. 

Side view of breast reconstruction and drainage port two weeks after surgery
Less than two weeks postsurgery

Because I lost both nipples to the bilateral mastectomy, I was disappointed that my implants had far less projection than I expected. The [surgery] was acceptable, but that was about it.

Frontal image of both breasts with some bruising and scarringone to three months after surgery
1 to 3 months postsurgery
Side view of significant bruising and discoloration one to three months after mastectomy
1 to 3 months postsurgery

I didn’t realize implants take 4–6 months to settle into their permanent positions. My fourth picture shows my reconstruction 2 years later, and it’s beautiful.

I am officially finished with breast cancer treatment, and I have more lingerie now than I had before breast cancer. It’s fun to dress up the foobs.

Frontal image of healed breasts with nipple and decorative flower tattoo
2 years after reconstruction

Bezzy BC and Young Survival Coalition are partnering to create What It Looks Like, a series showcasing photographs of different breast reconstruction choices on bodies of all shapes, sizes, and colors.

We’re spotlighting breast cancer survivors’ reconstruction decisions and stories so that other women facing mastectomy surgery can see and hear about many different real-life outcomes.

If you’re a survivor who’d like to share your reconstruction (or flat closure) images and story, we’d love to hear from you. Just have your photos ready and fill out this submission form.

Images and stories will be anonymously published on BezzyBC.com.

Medically reviewed on March 27, 2024

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