Breast reconstruction rejected due to having chemo 1st. Has this happened to anyone else?


I was diagnosed with breast cancer in January and currently waiting to have my last dose of chemotherapy. Went to see the surgeon a week ago and discuss the procedure. I'd always stated I would prefer a body tissue reconstruction as this just felt like the best option for myself. However I've been told my referral has been rejected as I've had chemotherapy first and my bmi is too high. I was wondering if anyone else has had this happen or if they have had a different type of breast reconstruction and would recommend/advise anything? I've been told I can have the body tissue reconstruction but at a later date and that the waiting list is about 2 years and they won't be in any sort of hurry to do it as it will be classed as cosmetic. I'm not sure I want to wait that long, especially for my mental health when I already don't feel like myself. Any advise would be appreciated. Thanks 

  • This is an awful blow for you. Can you ask for a second opinion? If you go for a delayed reconstruction you will be waiting ages as you said they class it as “cosmetic! “ This makes me so cross !  They don’t take into account your mental health , self esteem etc! How can you move on with your life if you have to wait that long? I was told that I couldn’t have a reconstruction as I had previous radiotherapy and I smoke , ditto implant . I said I was devastated so they referred me to a surgeon who specialised in micro surgery. I gave up smoking btw. They have agreed to do a DIEP FLAP in 4 months and have put me on Letrozole in the meantime . I really hope you get some positive answers . X

  • Offline in reply to LCR

    Ask if they can delay for a month to get you over the chemo . You could use that time to try and get your BMI down x Good luck 

  • Lou LCR 

    surely things should change around this it’s crazy 2 year wait is absolutely horrendous and COSMETIC as they call it it’s not fair it’s not cosmetic it’s traumatic for us ladies we need to be back to our normal state after such things .

    I had lunpectomy but I really feel that the system sucks in such cases 

    good luck hope you can get a second opinion xx 

    love Lara xx 

  • Offline in reply to LCR

    I have another appointment with them to discuss other options so will ask about a second opinion, I didn't even think of that. They have said they don't want to delay the mastectomy aseven though I've responded really well to the chemo, they found smaller flecks all over my breast and are treating it as a tumor with the area it's covered. It makes me so mad that it's classed as cosmetic also, it's not like we chose to have this happen to us! It's so wrong the system sometimes. Thank you for your advise, I will definitely ask about a second opinion. Good luck with yours xx

  • Offline in reply to laraj

    I know, 2 years is a long time isn't it. I think if they had said like 6 months or something it wouldn't be as bad. Thank you for your support though, glad it's not just me feeling let down. Hope you are doing well xx

  • Offline in reply to Lou_20


    yes definitely go for 2 nd opinion and please state about your mental state if you were to wait this long xx

  • Hello Lou,I had bilateral mastectomies last September,Chemo after the op.I have already had pre op assessment for reconstruction,I am going for implant as I could not cope with three month recovery , Who said it was cosmetic ? Second opinion and a complaint I think . 

    Could you go privately? A lot quicker too. 
    Best wishes