Mastectomy Bras Guide
Going through breast cancer surgery and recovery is an extremely difficult and traumatic experience for any woman and in some cases surgery must be undertaken to remove one or both breasts.
If you are waiting to undergo breast reconstruction surgery or if you have chosen not to have any plastic surgery then a mastectomy bra, worn in conjunction with a breast prosthesis (or ‘breast form’), is one way to regain your body confidence and create a natural symmetry. This guide provides an overview of the bra options available after breast cancer surgery and when they should be worn for correct post mastectomy care.
Initially, after your breast surgery, your doctor will likely recommend that you opt for a compression sports bra as the tissue around the area may feel swollen and sore. Until your doctor has recommended that you do so, you should not switch to a mastectomy bra and prosthesis as this could interfere with the initial healing process.
During this stage, you should opt for a bra which is as comfortable as possible, with soft seams, full cups and minimal detailing. In particular, it’s important that you avoid bras with an underwire as this could cause damage. Discover some of our non-wired selection.
After the post-op phase, some women choose not to have breast reconstruction surgery. This could be for a number of reasons such as not wanting to go through extra surgery, wanting to adjust to a new body shape or there could be medical reasons why surgery or anesthetic is not possible. If this is the case, or if you are awaiting reconstructive surgery, then mastectomy bras are available which have been specifically designed with high sides, a high centre cup and a stretchy upper cup which can encapsulate breast prostheses.
If you have had a single mastectomy then you should fit your new mastectomy bra to your other breast. Our fitting guide will give you handy tips on how best to do this. Once you are confident that the bra fits you correctly then it will be clear whether you need to make any adjustments to the prosthesis on order to achieve an even bust. With a double mastectomy, the bra needs to be fitted properly to your ribcage before the prosthesis can be added.
The bra should be tight but not uncomfortably so and you should be able to fit two fingers snugly underneath the back band, without being able to pull the bra away from your back. When fitting any mastectomy bra at all, the trick is to ‘test’ it as much as possible. Walk around wearing the bra, stretch up and bend down to ensure that the bra and the prostheses stay firmly in place while you are going about your day!