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Patients and Providers for Optimal Flat Closure: It’s About Full Disclosure and Informed Consent.
Aesthetic flat closure is reconstruction of the chest wall contour.
Institutions support flat closure.
“…The consortium focuses on oncoplastic breast conserving surgery, nipple/skin sparing mastectomy with immediate reconstruction and optimal flat closure after conventional mastectomy.“Oncoplastic Breast Consortium
“aesthetic flat closure:National Cancer Institute, Dictionary of Cancer Terms
A type of surgery that is done to rebuild the shape of the chest wall after one or both breasts are removed…”
Women facing mastectomy deserve full disclosure of all of their reconstructive options, including aesthetic flat closure, and to have their informed consent respected.
Patients speak out
“My surgeon gave me a handout on going flat, along with the info about reconstruction, at my first meeting with her… She did a perfect job on my chest.”― Anonymous
“I knew I wanted to be flat from the very beginning [but] I was given a skin-sparing mastectomy. I did not consent to that outcome, nor did ever imply that it was anything I wanted. I am devastated.”― Anonymous
Flat Denial: Why Does it Happen?
We face multiple cultural and institutional barriers to ensure that a woman’s choice to go flat is respected, every time. We now have clear language – aesthetic flat closure. But paternalism, protectionism, lack of a defined standard of care, sub-optimal prevalence of oncoplastic training for general surgeons, and an off-kilter reimbursement system are all pieces of the puzzle we still need to address.
Three of every four patients going flat are satisfied with their aesthetic outcome.
1 in 20
About 1 in 20 patients going flat – that’s a 5% risk for each woman who chooses flat closure – are subjected to intentional flat denial.
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Not Putting on a Shirt is a 501(c)(3) organization advocating for optimal surgical outcomes for women who choose to go flat after mastectomy.
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