Patient Stories

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Easy Exercises for Strength and Rejuvenation

These poses can be done and modified for most anyone, at any level. Most people can do these poses within weeks of surgery but consult with your doctor and use your best judgment to see if it is suitable for you.

  • Seated Twist
  • No-Jumping Jumping Jacks
  • Clasp hands/ draw hands up to heart/ push hands straight out from chest as

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Kim’s Journey to Health after Breast Cancer

At 43 years old, with a 3-year old daughter, I went in for a routine mammogram.  The results were far from routine.  My world stopped in the moment I received the phone call that I had cancer. I had been through years of infertility treatments to finally have my baby and the first thing I said to my doctor is, …


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Beatrice: two years after breast cancer and breast reconstruction

Without the physicians who are experts to their fields and dedicated to their patients, I would not be so lucky and confident in my life. My story began on May 25, 2005. My radiologist found calcifications on my left breast mammogram. She suggested I have a needle biopsy on 06/09/05. Three days later she called me at work and asked …


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Deborah: thriving after breast cancer

On a Monday morning at 7:30, I received a call that stopped my world.  On the other end of the line was my breast care surgeon telling me that I had breast cancer in one breast and the other appeared to have enough irregularities to be at risk too.  She told me,” If you were my sister I would recommend …


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Dena: 3-Time Breast Cancer Survivor

Dena is a 3-time breast cancer surviror

Breast Cancer doesn’t have to be about the disease.  It’s about the people we meet along the way.  It’s about the immediate bond and sisterhood that comes with saying,”I’m also a Breast Cancer survivor.”  It’s about the people that touch your heart and soul.  It’s about helping, caring, sharing, and loving.  It’s about …


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Denise: Persevering through Breast Cancer Three Times

The experiences of life never cease to amaze me.  I am a three-time breast cancer survivor.  I am a mother of four, a grandmother of three, and a daughter to one.  My children were supportive, loving, and never once did they lose hope.  Even after my third diagnosis, they were right there to cheer me on to victory.  How blessed …


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Donna: A New Body after Breast Reconstruction

Donna talks about her breast reconstruction

At the age of 35, and no history in my family, when I was told I had breast cancer I cried and thought “why me?”–which I’m sure everyone thinks.  Then I knew I couldn’t change what was happening to me so I went forward with a positive attitude to do what needed to be …


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Liz: My “Second Helping” of Breast Cancer

Second Helping.”  That’s what I called it when I was diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time. Here are excerpts from the email I sent out to tell my friends.

     “…so I have been diagnosed with breast cancer again (last time was almost 6 years ago).  Oh well, it was a good run!  I am now scheduled


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Erika: Breast Reconstruction after Prophylactic Mastectomy

Erika discusses breast reconstruction after prophylactic mastectomy

I was 12 years old when my life was forever changed by the word “cancer.” My oldest sister, Jenny, had been diagnosed with a rare form of leukemia at age 22. She died 18 months later at the age of 24. I was 14. Nine years later my older sister, Maggie, was diagnosed …


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Greta: Breast Reconstruction after Second Breast Cancer Diagnosis

Greta talks about her breast reconstruction after a second diagnosis of breast cancer

After being diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time, I made the decision to have a bilateral mastectomy.  Because my doctors advised I would need to move quickly with treatment, they suggested that I should wait for the reconstruction.  Once treatment was over and my doctors …


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Heidi: My Life’s Journey Includes Breast Cancer

Heidi talks about her life’s jouney

Life is a journey.   My journey happens to include breast cancer.  I wouldn’t trade my life or the experiences of the past year.  I have met and made incredible friends and strengthened existing relationships.  I have received the blessing of talented and compassionate doctors, nurses and other healthcare providers.  I have accomplished goals that …


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Jeanette: Stronger and More Beautiful After Overcoming Breast Cancer

Janet shares her story of surviving breast cancer

When I was first diagnosed with breast cancer, I felt like my world was in a downward spiral.  Every little pain made me wonder where else the cancer had spread.  I had never heard of Stage 0 Ductile Carcinoma in Situ (DCIS) breast cancer and even asked the nurse and surgery coordinator …


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Jeannie: my story of breast reconstruction after breast cancer

Jeannie talks about her breast reconstruction after breast cancer

In August 2001, after a younger sister was diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer, I made an appointment with Dr. Brenda Simpson at Breast Care Specialists.   I continued going to Dr. Simpson for annual mammograms until a second sister was diagnosed.  At this time, Dr. Simpson wanted me to be checked …


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Gwen: Grateful after Breast Cancer

Gwen talks about her breast cancer diagnosis

I was diagnosed in 2004.  My only child had just moved away to go to college and on his first weekend home I found out I had breast cancer.  There were a lot more adjustments than I had planned for.  This disease changed my life for the better.  I have so much to …


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Jill: from Breast Cancer to French Lingerie

Jill talks about breast cancer and sexy lingerie

There are 2 things in my life that I never thought I would do–be diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 45 and pose in some French lingerie for a photograph.  In fact, both of these events were so foreign to me that not only did I need to do research …


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Joanne: My Mother’s and My Breast Reconstruction

Joanne talks about her mother’s and her breast reconstruction

My mother’s story of breast cancer and reconstruction is far different from mine.  She didn’t know if she had cancer until she woke up from surgery and felt her chest.  Her breast was gone.  Reconstruction was difficult at best, as a radical mastectomy left little to work with.  After years of …


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Karen: Marriage, Motherhood, and Breast Cancer

Karen talks about marriage, motherhood, and loss during breast cancer

I will never forget the years of 2004 and 2005, as they were marked by cancer diagnosis tempered with the joy of becoming engaged and getting married.  In July 2004 I became engaged to my now husband: a wonderful, charismatic, funny, intelligent, and I must say handsome Englishman (think Ralph …


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Karen: Overcoming Breast Cancer

Karen talks about overcoming breast cancer

Upon finding out I had breast cancer, my sister-in-law told me, “Karen, you will get through this and everything will be fine.”

These words carried me through my diagnosis, surgery, and reconstruction.  How wise Ruth was.…


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Kathy: My Breast Cancer Treatment and Breast Reconstruction

Kathy talks about overcoming breast cancer

At 45, I was diagnosed with infiltrating and ductal carcinoma in situ in my left breast in June of 2005.  The month of June was spent meeting my new doctors (oncologist, breast specialist and plastic surgeon) and having many, many tests.  I had never had surgery or a hospital stay before, and I hated …


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Merrill: My Breast Cancer Story

Merrill: “We all live in glass houses”

“Never say never, and we all live in glass houses!”

I was very fortunate in my diagnosis of DCIS.  I was diligent in getting my mammogram yearly, which I believe was one–if not the most important–reason why I am a breast cancer survivor today.  I was extremely blessed to have been employed by …


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Nekita: I Killed Breast Cancer

Nekita: my story of breast cancer

When I was first diagnosed with breast cancer, it was like being thrown into a whirlwind.  I had to make very quick decisions in order to save my life.  Having the bilateral mastectomies with TRAM reconstruction was my choice.  And in hind sight, it has made me the most confident I’ve ever been in …


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Karen’s Story- “A ticking time bomb.”

“A ticking time bomb.”

That’s what I thought every time I had to schedule an annual mammogram or bi-yearly breast exam and ultrasound. I was at high risk for developing breast cancer—my mother was diagnosed with the disease at 44 and died when she was only 50. In my mind, it wasn’t a matter of if I developed the disease, …


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Heather: My Mommy Makeover

Heather: looking and feeling amazing 1 month after my Mommy Makeover

My Mommy Makeover story begins with my 2 healthy, beautiful, and heavy babies at the ripe ole’ ages of 38 for Stone and 39 for Stella. I had 40-week pregnancies and 8# 5 oz and 9# 4 oz babies, respectively. I breastfed both babies and when my milk came …


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Vera: My Story of Breast Cancer and Reconstruction

Vera shares her story of breast reconstruction

When I learned my daughter was getting married, one of the happiest days of a mother’s life, I also received one of the most devastating news; I had breast cancer.

They told me this was a positive conversation as it was found early.  I had to have both breasts removed, and I would …


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Oprail: Stronger and More of a Woman after Breast Cancer

 

Oprail: My Story of Breast Cancer

Breast cancer–I found mine during a self-breast examination. Once confirmed with a mammogram, I had three weeks before my surgery to research, prepare, and make decisions regarding my treatment options.  The process itself was like a whirlwind.

After each test, biopsy, and exam, I was looking for that definitive diagnosis about my cancer.   …


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Marianna: Breast Cancer Made Me Fearless

Marianna: “Thank you, cancer.”

Grateful for having breast cancer? Strange, but true.

It tried to take away my hair, but my hair grew back with a new, luxiourious fullness.

It tried to deform my body, but my body looks better now than when I was 25.

It tried to take away my courage, but it has made me fearless.

And …


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Robin: Beautiful Breasts After Breast Reconstruction

Robin: my story of breast reconstruction

Before I was diagnosed with breast cancer, I didn’t know what a TRAM (transverse rectus abdominis) flap was.  I had seen people with “boob jobs” and could only aspire!  When the doctor told me I had breast cancer, the only words I could remember were “cancer”, “flat stomach” and “beautiful breasts.”  That’s …


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ARTISAN PLASTIC SURGEONS PROVIDE GOLD MEDAL PERFORMANCE

It was a lucky day when I first met Dr. Diane Alexander years ago.  Her professionalism, skill, and compassion are unmatched.

As one ages, gravity and aging takes its toll.  At age 69, I decided to have cosmetic surgery to restore my self confidence and appearance. So in January 2011, Dr. Diane Alexander and Dr. Bernadette Wang Ashraf performed a …


Vicky: My Journey through Breast Cancer and Reconstruction

At the age of 45, I am a two time breast cancer survivor.  In September of 1994, during a routine check up, the doctor found a lump the size of a pea in my left breast.  A lumpectomy was done and while there was no cancer in the lump, there were cancer cells in the margins.  It was Ductal Carcinoma …


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Lisa: Breast Cancer and My New Best Friend

Lisa talks about her breast cancer journey

Breast cancer helped me make a new best friend….me!

It was the most inspiring journey I have been on.

It was scary but inspiring!  It humbled me and made me so proud at the same time.

I feel strong and sexy and the most beautiful I have ever felt in my life.…


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Jane: Thriving After Breast Cancer

Jane talks about her breast cancer and reconstruction

When I discovered my fairly large breast mass, that seemed to have appeared overnight, I immediately knew from its characteristics that the diagnosis probably wouldn’t be good. During those first several weeks I was overwhelmed with the feelings we all seem to share; shock, disbelief, fear of death, dread and sadness. I …


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Linda: Breast Cancer to Skydiving!

Linda discusses her breast cancer treatment

In February of the year of my 50th birthday, I found a lump.  Having no family history of cancer, I was not overly concerned.  I contacted my doctor and was told to come in for a mammogram.  I had a history of annual mammograms, as I know their importance.  The mammogram showed something unusual, …


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Kim: A Whole Woman After Breast Cancer Treatment and Reconstruction

Kim talks about her breast cancer diagnosis and treatment

I always knew it would happen, but I didn’t know when.  Both my maternal grandmother and my mother fell victim to breast cancer.  I had been having annual mammograms since age thirty-one, the year my mother was diagnosed.  A few ultrasounds and benign biopsies kept me hopeful, but before Christmas 2002, …


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Lori: Reconstruction After Breast Cancer

Lori talks about her breast reconstruction after breast cancer

I have found it important to keep a very positive attitude throughout the whole process.

I give praise to my wonderful surgeons and staff.  The reconstruction was a long recovery, but well worth it in the end.  My grandmother and my mom are breast cancer survivors and they didn’t have a …


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Mickey: Stupid Breast Cancer

Mickey

DCIS – what a stupid cancer.  Supposedly stage 0 or stage 1.  I liked the idea of let’s wait and see what would happen.  Three doctors thought I was crazy, and suggested a mastectomy.  I thought they were crazy.

The 4th doctor I visited was my plastic surgeon.  She listened to me, and very calmly told me that …


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Stephanie: Restored Body and Confidence After Breast Reconstruction

Stephanie talks about her breast cancer and reconstruction

Happy 50th birthday to me!  I received my cancer diagnosis one week before that greatly anticipated date.  Not exactly the present I had expected.  After the initial shock wore off, I began to prepare for the inevitable loss of my hair.  Imagine my shock when I was told that my cancer was …


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Candi: Forever Grateful after Breast Cancer Diagnosis

My journey began July 2015.  I had made lifestyle changes at the beginning of the year, with a healthier diet and daily exercise resulting in a 30 pound weight loss.  I was thrilled with my progress until one day, kind of out of nowhere, my breasts went way down south.  I decided I needed a breast lift with augmentation, …


Lorie: Cancer Has Been Good to Me

Dr. Alexander,

When I was in the office on Wednesday, I made a comment about cancer being good for me. You asked me to write something for you:

Cancer has been good for me. I have come to embrace a version of myself I never would have considered. Who knew my best look would come from the outcome of cancer …


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Pamela: breast cancer, rollerblades, and chocolate

Pamela talks about her breast cancer diagnosis and treatment

Seventeen years–that is how long it has been since I was diagnosed with breast cancer.  I remember the emotional rollercoaster.  Suddenly, death was no longer something I would have to prepare for someday when I get old, but a part of my everyday thoughts.  I was in my early thirties with …


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Africa: surviving and thriving after breast cancer

Africa: breast cancer and me

My world, a vertiginous roller-coaster of motherhood, family responsibilities and profession, came to an abrupt halt on December 15, 2004 at 3:30 PM.  “I am sorry but you have cancer” was the doctor’s comment over the phone.  Could she really understand what I felt?  Through the torrent of tears flowing as never before I saw …


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Vera: I am living my life!

Vera: my journey to a better self

For a woman that wears so many hats, it’s easy to get caught up in life and forget to be good to yourself.  Almost 3 years ago, I decided I was going to put myself as a priority in my life and I started doing the things that were important to me like …


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Wendy: faith through breast cancer

Wendy shares her story of overcoming breast cancer

God created us with glorious purpose!  He has shown me that a few times in my life, and one of the most meaningful was after being diagnosed with Stage II breast cancer.  Not something one wants to experience, but Jesus was so faithful in making me constantly aware of His presence and …


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Roxanne: my delayed breast reconstruction

Roxanne shares her story of breast reconstruction

In December of 1999 I underwent a lumpectomy and a radical mastectomy on my right breast.  After months of healing and chemotherapy, I vowed never to let a surgeon near me again!  So, for the next six 6 years, I learned to adjust and adapt.  My greatest frustration was with clothing.  The “grannie” …


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Janet: growing and learning through breast cancer

Janet talks about her diagnosis and treatment

Learning that you have breast cancer is not easy for anyone.  It’s the shock of your life, and for me, it occurred just after my 31st birthday.  I was convinced that it wasn’t cancer.  My primary care doctor who examined me said it didn’t have the features of cancer.  It was not …


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Brenda: overcoming breast cancer

Brenda talks about overcoming breast cancer

Biopsy, breast cancer, double mastectomy, chemotherapy and reconstruction. That was the series of events in my life three years ago.
I had great and talented doctors who gave me excellent care.
My family and very special friends were by my side to support me.
I did my best to be strong for everyone.

For …


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Doris

I never thought I would have plastic surgery, but it was the best thing I have ever done. My surgery and subsequent enhancements were for ME – not for my family or anyone else. Sometimes, we women get so caught up with our busy lives and we forget the first person to take care of is ourselves! I would never …


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Karen

“A ticking time bomb.”

That’s what I thought every time I had to schedule an annual mammogram or bi-yearly breast exam and ultrasound. I was at high risk for developing breast cancer—my mother was diagnosed with the disease at 44 and died when she was only 50. In my mind, it wasn’t a matter of if I developed the disease, …


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Jane

When I discovered my fairly large breast mass, which seemed to have appeared overnight, I knew immediately from its characteristics that the diagnosis probably wouldn’t be good. During those first several weeks, I was overwhelmed with the feelings we all seem to share when experiencing a serious illness: shock, disbelief, fear of death, dread, and sadness. I coped with these …


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Beatrice

Without the physicians who are experts in their fields and dedicated to their patients, I would not be so lucky and confident in my life. My story began on May 25, 2005. My radiologist found calcifications on my left breast mammogram. She suggested that I have a needle biopsy, which took place on June 9, 2005. Three days later she …


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Karen

My name is Karen; at 41, I had it all! An incredible husband and 2 wonderful children: my son, 10, and daughter, 8.

On July 19, 2007, while cooking dinner, I received the call. “You have cancer,” the doctor said. I replied, “Ok, let’s schedule the mastectomy, quickly.” I then called my husband, sister in-law and mother-in-law (my mom passed …


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Janet

Learning that you have breast cancer is not easy for anyone. It’s the shock of your life and, for me, it occurred just after my 31st birthday. I was convinced that it wasn’t cancer. My primary care doctor who examined me said it didn’t have the features of cancer. It was not hard and immobile. It was painful. Nevertheless, …


Anonymous

I wanted to share some thoughts about my recent tummy tuck with Dr. A in hopes of helping others as they make their medical decisions. I really did not know what to expect from the surgery, though I knew I had excess belly fat and skin that wasn’t going to going away no matter what I ate or what I …


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Roxanne

In December of 1999 I underwent a lumpectomy and a radical mastectomy on my right breast. After months of healing and chemotherapy I vowed never to let a surgeon near me again! So, for the next six (6) years I learned to adjust and adapt. My greatest frustration was with clothing. The “grannie” underwear was necessary to accommodate my prosthesis, …


Tara

What a blessing it was to find out I was having my SECOND set of twins in 2001! For me, it started off as sheer fear and over the years has converted into joy. But, it was hard to find the joy in every aspect of it...especially the abdominal area.

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Sharon

As I approach my 60th birthday, I look back on my life and the defining moments that have brought me to where I am now. Among them was the decision to say yes to the significant cosmetic surgery plan with Dr. Alexander. At 57 my body reflected a pear-shaped figure (heavy through the hips and upper legs and light on …


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Megan

About 5 years ago, I had a minor renovation done to my upper half…when I scaled back “the girls.” While the girls had served me well starting in high school (with an extra large cheerleading sweater to show for it)…I just wasn’t interested in toting around D+ sized weights on my shoulders for the rest of my life. Plus, after …


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Gina

My story began last June. I went in for my routine yearly check up with the gynecologist. My doctor thought she felt “something.”  She said, “Well, you are 40, let’s get you in for a mammogram.” I had two cysts when I was 30 and again at 36 so I really was not concerned about her feeling anything. I went …


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Elizabeth

My experience with Dr. Diane Alexander has been nothing short of a miracle. The almost five-year relationship with Diane has not only transformed me physically, but also mentally.