Patient Self-reported Breast Cup Size and Resultant Mastectomy Specimen Weight: Implications for Reconstructive Breast Surgery

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Background: Breast cup sizing irregularities exist due to discrepancy between garment manufacturers and patient reported measurements making it difficult to assess true preoperative and definitive postoperative breast cup size. This study aims to evaluate the association between patient self-reported breast cup size and mastectomy specimen weight as a way to determine postreconstruction breast cup size. Methods: This is a retrospective study that evaluated patients who underwent bilateral mastectomy at an academic center between 2019-2021. Cup size and mastectomy weight were our only independent and dependent variables, respectively. Covariates that were assessed included chest circumference, surgical oncologist, BMI, race, and age. Results: 243 patients were evaluated as a part of this study who underwent either total-simple (TS; 29), skin-sparing (SS; 146), or nipple-sparing (NS; 68) bilateral mastectomy. There were positively weak correlations using nonparametric correlation analysis for breast cup size to mastectomy weight in patients who underwent TS (r = 0.375; p = 0.004), SS (r = 0.353; p <0.001), and NS (r = 0.246; p = 0.004) mastectomy. The multivariate linear regression for TS (R2=0.520; p < 0.001), SS (R2=0.573; p < 0.001) and NS (R2=0.396; p < 0.001) mastectomy were significant. Covariates assessed in the regression showed BMI significant for all types, age for TS type, and SS type for breast surgeon and chest circumference. Conclusions: There is a positively weak correlation between preoperative breast cup size and mastectomy weight, providing evidence for the difficulty of estimating postoperative breast cup size. Thus, the conversation with the patient should focus on breast appearance and quality of life rather than postreconstruction breast size.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere4401
JournalPlastic and Reconstructive Surgery - Global Open
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 11 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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