As Seen in the Naples Daily News: Breast Cancer Surgery Breakthrough “Godsend” For Local Woman

Naples Breast Surgeon, Elizabeth Arguelles, MD interviewed with the Naples Daily News about “Hidden Scar” – an advanced breast surgery technique that hides scars from surgery, minimizing the emotional reminder of breast cancer. She and two of her patients shared their stories with the Naples Daily News. View the story below.

Breast cancer surgery breakthrough: Hidden scar technique is a ‘godsend’

By Liz Freeman

When Joanne Janopoulos learned she is genetically predisposed to breast cancer, the 45-year-old mother of two young children chose a preventive double mastectomy.

Her surgeon used a hidden scar and nipple-sparing approach that combines oncology care and plastic surgery for optimal aesthetic results.

The field of oncoplastic surgery has been used in Europe for years but has only recently started gaining traction with the American Society of Breast Surgeons.

The society formed a work group this year to promote oncoplastic surgery to its 3,000 members and to educate patients to inquire about it, said Dr. Juliann Reiland, chairwoman of the work group.

“Oncoplastic surgery is surgery where the emphasis on cosmetic results is just as important as taking out the cancer,” Reiland, a board-certified breast surgeon in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, said. “It has finally taken off in the last two years.”

For women, the physical and emotional toll of breast cancer is minimized as much as possible with oncoplastic surgery.

“It restored me to whole again,” Janopoulos, the Naples patient, said. “This surgery made me feel I could be myself again. Complete. Whole. It’s a godsend.”

Her board-certified breast surgeon, Dr. Elizabeth Ann Arguelles, with 21st Century Oncology in Naples, is one of four surgeons in Southwest Florida trained in hidden scar surgery with the help of a light retractor developed by Invuity, a San Francisco based medical device company.

So far 17 breast surgeons in the state have been certified in the hidden scar technique and 200 nationwide through peer training, Invuity spokesman Joe Guido said.

“They essentially teach you how to look at a breast differently,” Arguelles said. “You want to preserve the natural shape and symmetry. It teaches you how to do the surgery in a different fashion.”

Click here to view the full story on the Naples Daily News website.