Division in the Media

Dr. John Semple – Renaissance Man!

John Semple, chief surgeon at Toronto’s Women’s College Hospital. (stefanmorel.com/stefanmorel.com/Courtesy of Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation – Ontario Region)

John Semple, chief surgeon at Toronto’s Women’s College Hospital.
(stefanmorel.com/stefanmorel.com/Courtesy of Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation – Ontario Region)

There are a few things we like to see on a doctor’s office wall. A medical degree is a good start, especially if it’s from a university that doesn’t have the words “mail-order correspondence” in its name. But what about an art school diploma? For physicians, especially those engaged in medical research, that might be a good idea.

“When people find out that I was in fine arts before going into medicine, they say, ‘Wow, that was a real change.’ But it was a straightforward progression from my point of view,” says John Semple. Today he’s the chief surgeon at Toronto’s Women’s College Hospital, where he specializes in post-cancer breast reconstruction. He’s also a professor in the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Medicine and the chair of surgical research at the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation.

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Dr. Toni Zhong – Breast Reconstruction Rate in Canada Appears to Lag Other Countries: Researchers

Only a small percentage of Canadian women appear to opt for breast reconstruction following mastectomy, despite the safety of the procedure and its positive effects on a patient’s self-esteem, researchers say.

Use of immediate breast reconstruction at the same time as mastectomy has increased in the U.S. but not in Ontario, says Dr. Toni Zhong, a plastic and reconstructive surgeon at Princess Margaret Hospital.

Only a small percentage of Canadian women appear to opt for breast reconstruction following mastectomy, despite the safety of the procedure and its positive effects on a patient’s self-esteem, researchers say.

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Dr. Toni Zhong – Advanced post-mastectomy breast reconstruction improves women’s psychosocial and sexual wellbeing

TORONTO – Women who lose a breast to cancer report improvements in their state of mind and well-being three weeks after breast reconstruction surgery, a new survey indicates.

However, 20 per cent of the women experienced minor or major complications related to the reconstruction surgery, and many of the women were grappling with significant deterioration in the strength of their abdomen — the donor site for tissue to reconstruct the breast.

But study co-author Dr. Toni Zhong said that even when complications, lack of strength at the donor site, scarring and time off work were factored in, the positives outweighed the negatives.

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Dr. Melinda Musgrave – Breast Cancer Survivors Feel “Selfish” About Reconstructive Surgery

Dr. Melinda Musgrave was featured in Forbes recently with regards to breast cancer survivors and breast reconstruction:

Each year more than 254,000 American women battle breast cancer. But according to a new study very few of them will opt for breast reconstruction surgery after treatment.

Less than one-fifth of American women who undergo mastectomy currently choose to undergo breast reconstruction. Dr. Melinda Musgrave, a plastic surgeon at St. Michael’s Hospital who revealed findings that in Canada the number is as low as 7%, is determined to find out why this occurs.

“Reconstruction has a very positive effort on these women as they go through their breast cancer journey,” she says. “The problem is that it’s still seen as cosmetic or unnecessary and it needs to be brought into the correct light.”

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