You may not know that, even after undergoing reconstructive surgery, many women wear breast forms to help them look and feel their best. Even the best reconstructive surgeries cannot perfectly recreate the look of your natural breasts. Surgeons cannot always predict the eventual size of a reconstructed breast; after you’ve healed, you may want to enhance the size of your natural or reconstructed breast. Happily, a wide variety of breast forms, bras, and specially designed items of clothing are available to meet your changing needs after breast surgery.

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Purchasing Breast Forms

Before buying a breast prosthesis or partial breast form, get professionally fitted by a certified fitter. Prosthetics are available from specialty boutiques and department stores, as well as hospital-based shops and online companies. Properly fitted and weighted breast forms not only enhance your appearance, but also protect your posture.

You can ask your doctor or nurse for a referral to a store in your area where you can be fitted by an experienced fitter who can find the right products for your needs. Ask for a prescription, because many prosthetic devices and mastectomy bras are covered by insurance. The American Cancer Society also provides an online list of retailers. In addition, the American Cancer Society publishes tlc, which is both a magazine and a catalog full of products that can help women who are dealing with cancer; it also contains articles to help them cope.

Varieties Of Breast Forms

Before you purchase a breast form, you should familiarize yourself with your options. Prosthetics are available in a variety of textures, including soft, medium, and firm. You can also choose from different shapes, sizes, and colors.

  • Asymmetrical shapes are designed to be worn exclusively on the left or right side of the body.
  • Symmetrical shapes can be used interchangeably on either side.
  • Attachable forms are attached to the chest with gentle medical adhesive, and often feel lighter that other forms.
  • Partial breast forms come in a variety of shapes and can be used after lumpectomy, reconstruction, or partial breast surgery. Partial breast forms may be made of silicone or lightweight foam and are often intended to be tucked inside a bra or camisole to fill in the breast and create a symmetrical silhouette. From narrow, tear-drop shaped forms that can be worn on the outside of the breast, to oval shapes that are designed to lift the breasts, to side panel cushions that can help to support the pectoral muscles, you are sure to find a form that can comfortably meet your needs.

Bras, Tops, And Swimwear

Once you choose a breast form, you should select a comfortable bra that provides the level of support you need. Many companies specialize in clothing for women who have undergone breast surgery, so don’t hesitate to shop around until you find both the prosthetics and the clothing that suit you best.