Janis Hardy - Dr. Marga's December 2012 Mermaid of the Month

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Janis Hardy

Dr. Massey is my hero because she rescued me from my unfortunate breast reconstruction. In the spring of 2004, I was diagnosed with DCIS, ductal carcinoma in situ. Only a few months previous, I learned I had the BRCA2 mutation giving me an increased risk of breast and ovarian cancer. With the cancer and mutation my best choice was to have a bilateral mastectomy with immediate reconstruction. My head was swirling with my new found information and I frantically tried to learn more about BRCA2, DCIS, and breast reconstruction in a limited amount of time.

Never having surgery before, I trusted my care to my general surgeon and his fellow plastic surgeon in planning and performing my surgeries at a local hospital. After the surgery I developed a rare complication, symmastia, where the muscle holding the implant tore away from my sternum leaving my implant floating. My plastic surgeon tried twice to correct it without success.

I became distraught over the situation and searched for a breast reconstruction specialist that might correct the distorted breast. That is when I found Dr. Massey at the Huntsman Cancer Institute in Salt Lake City, Utah. She told me symmastia is difficult to repair and it would require two more surgeries. I was very concerned about the surgeries since I had already been through four surgeries with unsatisfactory results. I was dreading the pain and recovery from more surgeries and had little trust in surgeons.

Dr. Massey was very warm and caring even calling me at my home on a Sunday afternoon to discuss my concerns and formulate a plan. She was able to gain my trust and ease my anxiety. So we proceeded with two surgeries and expanders over three months time.

I don't know who was more pleased with the results of my surgeries, me or Dr. Massey. We were both jumping for joy over my beautiful, new breasts. I felt like shouting her name from the street corners!

There was no comparison of my previous plastic surgeon and Dr. Massey. I never saw my previous surgeon at the hospital before or after my three surgeries. Yet Dr. Massey was there before and several times after the surgeries she performed giving my hugs and reassurance.

Dr. Massey is very passionate about breast reconstruction and truly loves her patients. I highly recommend her to anyone in need of breast reconstruction. I sent my daughter to Dr. Massey for her prophylactic mastectomy and DIEP reconstruction even though it meant traveling out-of-state to Dr. Massey’s new location in South Carolina. I knew I could not trust my daughter’s care to anyone else. We both truly love this woman.

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