Surgical techniques are being refined to enhance reconstruction and rehabilitation after definitive therapy. The ability to reconstruct anatomic defects can substantially improve function and cosmetic appearance.2 Reconstructive and rehabilitative surgery has been associated with:2
- enhanced self-image
- improved sexuality
- improved physical functioning
- a sense of well-being.
The specific reconstructive procedure depends on the type of primary surgery performed, the condition of the remaining tissue and the need for post-operative adjuvant therapy. Reconstruction may be immediate or delayed, depending on circumstances. The individual affected by cancer may require considerable psychological support during the period of adaptation to their physical loss, especially before completion of surgical reconstruction or prosthetic restoration.10
Access the Cancer Australia webpage Breast reconstruction, and outline the advice an SCN may provide for a woman who asks for information to decide whether to have breast reconstruction surgery.
Access a current text or journal article and discuss the role of rehabilitative and/or reconstructive surgery in the treatment of:
- Colorectal cancer
- Maxillofacial cancers.