World reputation for breast ops
Pre Operation Patient Interview
Post Operation Patient Interview
By Oliver Rogers
BBC Essex has been given access to a pioneering medical procedure at Chelmsford's Broomfield Hospital.
Cathy, a woman who lives here in Essex, was able to have a mastectomy and breast reconstruction operation all on the same day. Dave Monk, from BBC Essex, was allowed to observe the treatment happening in the operating theatre of the hospital.
Cancer surgeon, Mr Hugo Taylor, told BBC Essex: "This operation is different to an older implant procedure."
The St Andrew's Centre at Broomfield Hospital has an international reputation for this operation. The team performed over 300 reconstructions last year and surgeons come from different parts of the world to train.
Cathy's operation was led by breast reconstruction surgeon Venkat Ramakrishnan.
"We connect the blood vessel in the armpit to provide the blood supply," he said.
"One of the unnoticed benefits with this type of operation, as opposed to doing the older implant procedure is the texture of the breast.
"Women with implants have cold breasts, these women do not, they have a nice normal temperature," said Mr Taylor. Anaesthetist, Dr Stephen Oakey said: "I would expect our patient to be awake within 10 to 15 minutes of leaving the operating theatre, and then going back to the ward within about an hour." A report from the National Mastectomy and Breast Reconstruction Audit highlights Essex as providing 46 per cent of women with immediate reconstruction at the time of their mastectomy, compared to a national rate of 14 per cent.
Please note the audio contains graphic description of the operation as it takes place at Broomfield Hospital in Chelmsford.