Bonnie Annis is a breast cancer survivor, diagnosed in 2014 with stage 2b invasive ductal carcinoma with metastasis to the lymph nodes. She is an avid photographer, freelance writer/blogger, wife, mother and grandmother.
A very light hearted look at a serious problem.
Recently, I read a news article about a plastic surgeon in the 1990s who invented a “cure” for baldness. This cutting-edge doctor became his own patient and with the help of his father, who was also a doctor, had surgical steel snaps inserted into his skull. These snaps allowed hair pieces to be securely attached providing the wearer freedom to participate in activities without fear of embarrassment. His ingenious invention afforded him notoriety until he committed crimes and was sentenced to prison. I don’t want to applaud him for anything other than his creativity and for his ability to inspire me to begin thinking of a dually serious and comedic blog post.
The idea of “implantology” is not new. It has been used in the medical field for some time. Doctors are able to surgically implant small titanium fixtures into bone allowing facial prostheses to be easily attached and removed by the patient. Dentists use the same type procedure to affix permanent dentures or missing teeth. If these medical advancements have helped replace missing hair, teeth or body parts, why couldn’t this same type procedure be adapted to benefit women affected by breast cancer?
I struggle daily with my breast prostheses. Not only are they cumbersome and irritating, but there are also days when I just don’t like them. Although I choose to put them on when I am out in public, there are many days I choose not to wear them. I haven’t become comfortable going flat, although many women who’ve lost breasts are now choosing that option. For the past three years, I’ve battled my artificial breasts. I’ve stuffed them into mastectomy bras only to have the weight of them cause me discomfort and pain. I’ve tried making my own lighter prostheses from materials such as polyester fiberfill or microbeads only to have them float mysteriously over my chest. Without any type of weight to hold them in place, they gradually make their way under my chin or out of my blouse.
So I was thinking, I might like to have the choice of participating in a clinical trial for snap on breasts. Now I don’t know if such a study would ever take place, but it could, if there was a high demand for such a thing. The surgical procedure to implant a titanium snap into the chest wall would only take a few minutes, be minimally invasive, and pose little to no risk of infection. After the implant had properly healed, the patient could choose from a variety of prosthetic sizes, changing her mind at the flick of a snap.
Snap-on breasts would be wonderful and I could go braless without being flat chested. Of course, I’d probably keep my shirt on even though I had detachable breasts but hey, no one would have to know I had surgical implants except me.
I know what you’re thinking. You’re probably wondering why I wouldn’t just choose to have silicone implants, aren’t you? Well, I’m health conscious and I wouldn’t want to experience problems due to a leaky implant or have to go in for a periodic refill.
Yes, I think someone needs to work on getting serious about the possibility of implementing snap-on boobs. Of course, there would be draw backs. For instance, it would be very difficult to have an MRI with those snaps in place and security personnel might give you a little grief while going through their airport scanners, and it would be a royal pain in the rear to explain to people.
But I still think I have a good idea here. Maybe it’s not the best as it is, but then again, I’m not an inventor or a medical professional.
They say necessity is the mother of invention and I need a solution to my frustrating daily problem. Perhaps I need to offer myself as a human guinea pig in the name of scientific discovery. What do you think? Can you picture it? Three or four titanium snaps implanted on each side of my chest wall? A variety of silicone snap on breasts in all shapes and sizes lying across my bed? Me, standing there perusing my choices and then in a split second, the boob is attached and I’m ready to go? I think it would be quite hilarious at first, but after a time or two of using my snap on breasts, and after selling my patented product, I just might become a millionaire. And then, who would be laughing? I would, all the way to the bank!