Compassion Counts In Breast Cancer Healing Process
Prevention & Treatment For women facing breast reconstruction, a doctor's bedside manner plays a critical role.
When cosmetic surgeon Ali Sadeghi, MD, FACS first meets with cancer patients, he knows there will likely be tears.
“They are overwhelmed, because there is so much going on in their minds,” explains Dr. Sadeghi, founder and director of Aesthetic & Reconstructive Breast Center in New Orleans. “They come in here very sad, crying because their lives have been turned upside down.”
Katie Kelly knows the apprehension all too well. In 2014, she was diagnosed with stage II triple negative invasive ductile carcinoma.
“I was completely blindsided. I had just turned 30, and my husband, Ryan, and I had just welcomed our baby boy, Colin, into the world. Adjusting to motherhood and fighting for my life made it a very emotional time.”
"I try to put patients at ease by being really sincere and connecting on a personal level.”
Kelly endured six months of chemotherapy, 29 rounds of radiation and a double mastectomy. In June 2015, she underwent the first phase of reconstruction.
“I definitely had fears. Since I had radiation, I wasn't a prime candidate for implants, so Dr. Sadeghi recommended the DIEP flap reconstruction. He always explains everything and replies to my concerns and fears in a relaxed tone, which helps calm me down.”
Comfort and support
“My job is to make them more comfortable about the whole process,” Dr. Sadeghi contends. “I try to put them at ease by being really sincere and connecting on a personal level.”
He says making patients aware of the advances in breast reconstruction gives them confidence when undergoing the procedure.
“At end of day, they're putting their fate in your hands. They are able to look in the mirror a few months down the line and say, 'I did it. I'm complete, and I'm able to live my life again.'”