Is it possible to undergo breast cancer treatment during the COVID-19 era


The COVID-19 epidemic had spread to over 200 nations, including the Philippines. Millions of Filipinos were afflicted by this highly infectious virus. It also led to the interruption of other services and sectors, including medical care including breast cancer treatment in the Philippines. Hospitals and clinics were entrusted with accommodating the increasing stream of infected persons and providing them with the necessary emergency care to preserve their lives. It compelled local authorities to impose tight countrywide lockdowns and targeted quarantines to avert the rising number of diseases.

From a global standpoint, it can be argued that breast reconstruction is not in the interest of infected patients as well as the national health care system and this is based on a recent study. With that said, the researchers noted that breast cancer care and other treatments like breast reconstruction must resume as soon as possible because the significant delays may cause psychological consequences for these patients. 

Now, considering the difficult circumstances that patients encounter during the COVID-19 era, what are the probable motivations that might drive them to get their breast reconstruction?

Factors That Would Encourage a Patient to Have Breast Reconstruction During This Pandemic

Regardless of the current scenario, breast reconstruction should not be compromised because it is a type of cancer care critical for breast cancer patients and breast cancer survivors. It offers them an opportunity to move forward in their lives while reclaiming their physical appearance. Furthermore, it can boost their self-confidence as women. 

Patients may continue to pursue their delayed breast reconstruction surgery during this COVID-19 era if the hospitals would provide ample equipment within the medical facilities to keep them safe against the virus, all the needed reconstructive materials must be readily available, and their surgeon must be available to conduct a more thorough physical examination of their body. 

Medical Facilities and PPE for the Patient

A high-quality medical facility is one of the primary factors that encourage patients to continue their breast reconstruction. Patients are very concerned about the current situation of the hospital where they will undergo breast reconstruction. They feel safer and secure when the hospital and clinics are well-ventilated or do have air purifiers that help to eliminate any airborne bacteria or viruses. Some hospitals even supply Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to their surgeons and medical personnel to provide them with an extra layer of safety while they are on duty. 

Motiva®: Choosing the Right Breast Implants

One of the challenges during this COVID-19 era is the availability of breast implants. Most of the breast implants in the Philippines are coming from abroad and the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted shipments of these implants to local hospitals and clinics. 

Moreover, choosing the right implants for breast reconstruction is essential for patients because it will be responsible for the overall look of their breasts but also must have a natural feel. It must be emphasized that not all breast implants are the same. The reason why it is recommended by surgeons to have bio-compatible breast implants is to reduce the risk of rare breast implant-related complications. 

Motiva® breast implants are one of the breast implants which are gaining popularity in the Philippines due to its quality and innovative features.  Over the years, it continuously helps women to rebuild their natural breast size and shape while it mimics the natural movement of their breasts. 

Its innovative feature SmoothSilk®/Silksurface® is designed to have an even thickness throughout the implant shell. It is possible because of the 3D printing technology and it doesn’t use salt/sugaring methods since these materials are often linked to rare breast-related diseases. 

One of the concerns of most patients is the capability of the breast implant to withstand an extreme amount of pressure. The TrueMonobloc®, another safety feature of Motiva Implants®, enables the implant to withstand huge amounts of stress. It can be easily stretched without even ripping it into two. This characteristic allows the surgeon to effortlessly insert the implant through a small incision which is about 2.5cm to 3cm this is smaller if it is being compared to the traditional incision size that requires about 5cm. 

Some people might be wondering how a surgeon would know if an implant is safe to use before the operation. Do they use a piece of highly- advanced medical equipment to examine it? Well, if that is the case it would take a lot of time to know but Motiva® breast implants came up with a brilliant idea of developing the BluSeal®. It is a safety feature that allows the surgeon to visually check the implants for any damage or deformities. It is all possible with the help of the bluish color that surrounds the shell signifying to the surgeon that the breast implants are free from any damage or deformities.

Furthermore, Motiva® has a specially designed silicone gel called ProgressiveGel®. It avoids the unwanted rippling sensation. Women could now move freely without being constrained by their breast implants. In addition, this gel provides the same feel similar to how natural breast tissue would feel. 

More importantly, patients are eligible to have an Extended Warranty Program for any Motiva® breast implants in the Philippines. Patients may have the option to extend the warranty of their implants and they can easily enroll on Motiva’s website. The applicable fee must be paid by the patients within the first 90 days after the placement of the Motiva Implants®.  Its 2Y Extended Warranty Program is available for $100 USD while the 5Y Extended Warranty Program is only $200 USD.

Surgeons Availability

Doctors and reconstructive surgeons were advised to refrain from any physical consultation with their patients. It is a safety measure for them to protect themselves against the virus. This situation becomes an additional hurdle for the patients since they need to be physically examined by their surgeon and provide them with informative medical advice that would help them when it comes to their decision-making. 

The modernization of technology played a crucial role in our communication, especially during the height of the pandemic. Patients may instantly connect with their surgeons and doctors and establish their online consultation. There are challenges along the way such as the slow internet but this is an effective way to communicate and instantly gain the needed information of the patient for their breast reconstruction. With that said, it is advisable to have an on-site consultation with your doctor to run through important parts of your surgery such as choosing the implants and safety guidelines.

Patient’s Overall Health

Breast reconstruction surgery can be done either shortly after the mastectomy procedure (immediate reconstruction) or after the mastectomy incision has healed (delayed reconstruction). The patient must discuss all the options with her surgeon before deciding which course to take. When a surgeon must decide if a patient is a good candidate for instant breast reconstruction, they carefully assess the patient’s overall physical fitness. This assessment includes taking into consideration the patient’s weight, age, health history, medications, and alcohol and tobacco use. All of these factors play a role in whether or not the patient’s body can handle the surgery.

In addition, some patients must wait until they are done recovering from their mastectomy before beginning treatment. 

The process of waiting for surgery after a mastectomy can be difficult for some patients. For many, they must wait until they are fully recovered from their mastectomy treatment. This time can be trying for patients as they hope for a full recovery.

It is crucial to remember that breast reconstruction is not a one-size-fits-all operation because every patient’s body is a unique size-fits-all operation. After all, a patient’s body is different from another patient’s body. 

Lastly, patients must always be aware of the recent developments and announcements being provided by medical organizations and authorities. The information that they’ll be getting would help them with their decision-making for breast reconstruction during the COVID-19 era. Without this information, some patients would face unwanted difficulties and might even have dreadful consequences for their health. 

As the whole nation moves forward during this time of the COVID-19 pandemic, Breast Surgery PH continues to collaborate and work with licensed plastic surgeons around the country. They can provide you with a safe medical procedure that will match your expectations using your preferred breast implants like Motiva® Breast Implants. BSPH is looking forward to being part of your exciting journey while you achieve all of your dreams and goals. 

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