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“Dr. Smith is the happy ending to this story. Everyone that I spoke to about him said, ‘you're in great hands.’”

Daphne’s Story


Daphne’s breast cancer diagnosis came out of left field. With no family history of breast cancer and longtime cystic breasts, she was surprised when to find a lump one day in the shower. She was quickly screened and whisked into a biopsy followed by a lumpectomy to remove the cancer.

After the lumpectomy, Daphne’s surgeon reported that they did not get clear margins around the tumor. Daphne then opted to have a mastectomy to remove all of the breast tissue, with a plan for implant reconstruction.

“There was not a second in the day that I didn't think cancer, cancer, cancer.”

Daphne struggled through multiple rounds of chemo over a period of 10 years.

Meanwhile, a tissue expander has been placed during her mastectomy, followed by a saline breast implant. After several years, however, built-up scar tissue began to cause capsular contracture, deforming the implant.

Daphne had her saline implant replaced with a silicone one, but she encountered the same issue.

“Slowly but surely, scar tissue pushed the implant up. It was deformed. To me, it looked like a brick, and it felt like a brick. I didn't feel whole. I didn't look whole. That does impact your quality of life, how you feel about yourself.”

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Daphne was mopping her floor when she felt something snap in the breast with the implant. She called her prior plastic surgeon, only to find out that he was no longer at the practice, and that the practice would no longer accept her insurance. So she started looking for other options.

Dr. Smith is the happy ending to this story. Everyone that I spoke to about him said, ‘you're in great hands.’ I only have wonderful things to say about him and his team. Everyone has been amazing.

By the time she was referred to and saw Dr. Smith, Daphne knew that her second implant would also have to come out. She was thrilled that her husband was allowed to join her for every appointment.

"I went in with a lot of questions. And whether they were silly or important, Dr. Smith’s team took the time to answer every single question, which is important to me."

After consulting with Dr. Smith, Daphne decided to replace her implant with a natural tissue reconstruction using the DIEP flap procedure. DIEP flap was not offered to her at the time of her initial mastectomy, so Dr. Smith took the time to educate her on what would be involved in the procedure.

“Dr. Smith and his team are super attentive to all the patients. There's no question that’s too insignificant for them. They answered every single question, even the ones that came out of left field. I knew that they were competent in what they do. But they also cared about the person behind the breasts, I guess you could say.”

Although the initial recovery took several weeks and she will still return for nipple reconstruction, Daphne is happy with her outcome.

Well, I feel whole. I haven’t felt this way in a long time. I can wear a bra without having to put anything in it to make it look like the other one, or worry that anything is shifting. It's amazing.

“When I had my mastectomy, I could not look in the mirror. I just never expected to look normal again. To be able to look in the mirror and see a whole body—and it's all me—that means a lot. It means a whole lot.”

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