National B.R.A. Day is celebrated annually on the third Wednesday in October to honor women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer and this year, it falls on October 16. The holiday’s primary goal is to educate, engage, and empower women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer. These women should have access to information they need to make an informed decision about their treatment, including their breast reconstruction options, which means educating patients, their family and caregivers, and the media. However, there is still work to be done in educating women and their families on breast cancer and treatment options.
History of National BRA Day
National Breast Reconstruction Awareness Day, or B.R.A. Day, is a day dedicated to raising awareness about the various alternatives available to women who have had breast reconstruction. Breast reconstruction is not for everyone, but every woman must be given all the information they need to make an informed decision about available options. Breast cancer treatment has come a long way since Halsted first detailed his surgical approach in 1895. Breast reconstruction has also garnered attention from both doctors and patients alike.
In the 1800s, the first attempt to reconstruct a breast after a mastectomy occurred when a lipoma was transplanted to the location of the mastectomy. Several breast reconstruction procedures, ranging from Gilles’ “walking flap” to the free perforator flap using autogenous tissue for the reconstruction of a breast “mound,” have been developed and refined. The use of tissue expanders for breast reconstruction has also been developed significantly over the last three decades.
Even though breast reconstruction was formerly frowned upon in the early part of the 20th century, it is considered standard practice for women after breast cancer surgery today. Breast reconstruction procedures have advanced greatly over the past few decades. A woman with breast cancer can take comfort in knowing that she will be able to live her life with a breast that resembles and feels just like her own. This can be accomplished with the use of implants or autologous reconstruction. A variety of solutions are available to meet the requirements of the person.
National BRA Day timeline
Vincent Czerny, a Heidelberg professor of surgery, is largely credited for the first autogenous breast repair.
When Cronin and Gerow introduce the silicone gel breast implant, they usher in a new age of breast reconstruction.
Dr. Mitchell Brown, a Canadian plastic surgeon, is the brains behind the inception of B.R.A. Day, and the first annual event is held.
The event expands to the United States.
National BRA Day FAQs
How long after a mastectomy can a patient have breast reconstruction?
After a mastectomy, reconstruction may be delayed for months or years. If the nipple and areola were not preserved during the mastectomy, they can be re-created on the reconstructed breast in the last step of breast reconstruction.
Can you keep feelings in your breasts after breast reconstruction surgery?
Some types of reconstruction surgery may leave you unable to feel your breasts, though this may change. Swelling and bruising might linger for up to eight weeks.
How long does breast reconstruction surgery last?
Preparation for the surgery may take two hours, including anesthesia. Reconstruction time is one to six hours.
How to Observe National BRA Day
Discuss the condition as much as you can
If you have had any experience with breast cancer, it is important to share your story with others so they can understand what you went through and how you overcame it. Your experience can be extremely beneficial to others on their journeys.
Make donations or host fundraising events
You can help women with breast cancer by hosting or organizing a local fundraiser. You can donate to research groups or organizations that serve breast cancer patients.
You can educate them about detection, prevention, and risk factors. For breast cancer, early detection is critical, so encourage others around you to get tested.
5 Facts About Breast Cancer
Additional corrective procedures may be required in breast cancer treatment.
No effect on recurring cancer
In terms of cancer recurrence and life expectancy, breast reconstruction has no effect.
When performing a breast reconstruction treatment, the goal is to cause you as little pain or discomfort as possible.
Underlying factors may influence patients
Every surgery has its own set of limitations because of the tumor, underlying medical condition, and/or unique physical characteristics of each patient.
Breast implants provide a natural feeling
Breast cancer surgery scars will diminish and soften over time, making the breast appear and feel more natural as time goes on.
Why National BRA Day is Important
It gives patients all the information
Breast reconstruction following a mastectomy can be a difficult choice for many women. While not every woman is a candidate for breast reconstruction, every woman should be provided with all the required information and resources so that she is aware of her alternatives and may make informed decisions about her options.
We can explore other options
Women who do not choose to have reconstructive surgery have other options. Technology and design for prosthetic limbs are continually changing, providing each woman with a diverse range of options.
We can regain confidence
Breast reconstruction surgery, while not compulsory, allows women to regain their confidence. Some women feel out of place, and breast reconstruction surgery might help them feel more like themselves.
National BRA Day dates