How do women perceive their breast image before and after bilateral therapeutic mammoplasty for early breast cancer?

Fergus Taylor (Lead / Corresponding author), Vassilis Pitsinis, Wen L. Choong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: Bilateral therapeutic mammoplasty (BTM) is commonly performed in the UK during treatment for breast cancer, and the available data show oncological safety. This study aims to compare patient-recorded outcome measures before and after surgery, as well as associated patient factors.

Methods: Between March 2018 and December 2019, patients undergoing BTM for breast cancer completed validated BREAST-Q reduction modules before and 3 months after surgery and a radiotherapy domain at 3 months. Scores were correlated with clinical data. For BREAST-Q scales, a higher score (0–100) represents greater satisfaction or quality of life

Results: 28 patients were included, median age 58 years (IQR 52–64), BMI 32.0 (IQR 27.8–34.0). Of these, 1 had bilateral disease, 2 had multifocal disease, and the remaining had unilateral disease. Most (55%) underwent Wise pattern incision. At 3 months post-operatively, the following outcome scores improved based on the Wilcoxon signed-rank test: satisfaction with breasts (median 44 to 84; p < 0.001), psychosocial wellbeing (57.5 to 83; p < 0.001) and sexual wellbeing (48 to 61; p = 0.029). The improvement in satisfaction with breasts score correlated with the preoperative score (p = 0.011), with a larger increase in patients with a lower baseline score.

Physical wellbeing was unchanged overall (median 71 to 72). In all solely post-operative domains (satisfaction with information, outcome, nipples and following radiation), patients reported high levels of satisfaction with outcomes.

Conclusions: Patients reported improved levels of patient-related quality of life measures after therapeutic mammoplasty, including satisfaction with breasts and psychosocial and sexual wellbeing, with high post-operative outcomes in satisfaction with outcome, information and nipples, as well as radiation Q-score.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)218-224
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery
Early online date12 Feb 2024
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2024


  • Bilateral therapeutic mammoplasty (BTM)
  • Breast image
  • BREAST-Q™ breast reduction module
  • Patient-reported outcomes
  • Therapeutic mammoplasty and contralateral symmetrisation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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