Anne Peled Plastic Surgery

Based in San Francisco, Dr. Anne Peled is a surgeon, an educator, a researcher, a mother, an athlete, and a breast cancer survivor. Just a few years into starting her own thriving breast cancer and plastic surgery practice, Anne was diagnosed with breast cancer herself, which gives her the unusual perspective of both the expert and the patient. This has also only strengthened her dedication to provide the most empathic and personal care for her patients, to research and innovate the most cutting edge techniques and practices for breast cancer surgery and reconstruction, and to educate her peers and the public on the best care and prevention for breast cancer and breast health.

BBC News: 'I have sensation in my breasts again'

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When Sarafina Nance found out she had a very strong chance of getting breast cancer, she decided to have a preventative double mastectomy followed by reconstruction. The surgery would dramatically reduce the risk, but she would likely lose feeling in her chest. The 26-year-old was "fully prepared" to be numb, until pioneering surgery changed her life.

The first time Sarafina was screened for breast cancer, doctors found something worrying.

She already knew she had inherited the BRCA2 gene from her father, after he was diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer and she had genetic testing.

The gene increases the risk of developing a number of cancers - including breast cancer; Sarafina, who lives in California, was told she'd need twice-yearly screening.

But after her first MRI scan, doctors ordered a biopsy.

"Waiting for the results, I was completely debilitated," Sarafina says.

"I remember calling my dad, asking him what happens if we both have cancer. What if I die?"

The mass was benign, but Sarafina realised she didn't want to go through repeated scans.

Still in her mid-20s, she decided to have a preventative double mastectomy with reconstruction. She would have all her breast tissue removed and implants would create new breasts.

 
Sarafina Nance recovering in a hospital bedImage copyrightSARAFINA NANCE
Image captionSince having her mastectomy, Sarafina has felt a 'sense of peace'

Typically, mastectomy with reconstruction is offered to two groups: those with a cancer diagnosis, and those who have a high genetic tendency to developing breast cancer who choose to undergo preventative operations.

Dr Emma Pennery, clinical director at UK charity Breast Cancer Now, says that there is a distinction between the procedures that may be offered to women like Sarafina, and those who have already developed breast cancer. It's of the utmost importance that the cancer is properly treated.

"Breast cancer cells can exist in the area behind the nipple or behind the areola, so you have to be safe to get all the cancer out," Dr Pennery says, adding that ongoing cancer treatment plans may affect the method of reconstruction.

'You don't feel hugs'

Sarafina is an astronomy PhD student at the University of California, Berkeley, and when she started researching her surgical options, her science background kicked in.

"It was very difficult to know what I should be doing," she says.

"Women who have mastectomies and reconstruction can lose feeling in their breasts and that can mean you don't feel hugs, or you don't feel waves crashing into you if you're in the ocean."

Dr Pennery says the surgeons she's worked with will try to minimise any side effects for women having preventative mastectomies.

"The ease of removing breasts and reconstructing the breasts does vary an awful lot on things like the size of the breast, the size of the nipple and areola and also how central it is, which can be affected, putting it bluntly, by how droopy one is," she says.

With implant reconstruction, it's "quite likely" a woman will lose sensation afterwards, she says.

"In order to do the mastectomy and reconstruction, the surgeon cuts through some of the nerves that supply the area and that's what leads to the numbness."

A study from the Royal Marsden in London, published in 2016, found that "breast sensibility is significantly impaired following mastectomy and reconstruction" but noted the majority of women go on to recover some light touch sensation.

"Sensory changes post-reconstruction have largely been overlooked in the past, but can be crucially important in a woman's quality of life and affect how she accepts her reconstruction," says Ms Ayesha Khan, a consultant oncoplastic breast surgeon and one of the study's authors.

"Novel techniques to better preserve sensation post-reconstruction are in evolution and likely to be something women could benefit from in the future."

Anne PeledImage copyrightHANDOUT
Image captionDr Peled focuses on improving surgical outcomes for mastectomy and reconstruction patients

After weeks of research, Sarafina found Dr Anne Peled, who is based in California and trained in both breast cancer and reconstructive/plastic surgery.

Dr Peled is also a breast cancer survivor.

"When I had my own diagnosis," Dr Peled says, "I had a really, really difficult time making a choice, because I felt like it was so daunting to consider at age 37, having no sensation in my chest for the rest of my life."

She opted for an alternative surgery and is now working with her husband, a nerve specialist, on finding new approaches to preserve sensation.

Dr Peled performed a mastectomy and then a reconstruction with implants on Sarafina at the end of 2019.

Sarafina's first emotion when she woke up from the anaesthetic was relief, and her recovery has been going well.

"I now have sensation in my whole right side and three-quarters of my left side and it's coming back more and more every day," she says.

Dr Peled performing surgeryI

Sarafina is now using social media to raise awareness of preventative mastectomies and reconstruction, studying for her PhD and applying to train as an astronaut.

It's been a challenging time for her family, especially her father, who is still having treatment for his own cancer.

"He was very sad that I have the [genetic] mutation, I have to undergo this and face things that I think he wishes I'd never have to face," Sarafina says.

"But I think he's really proud and very relieved that everything went so well and that I feel 100% like myself."

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Dr Anne Peled Discusses Breast Cancer Surgery in San Francisco

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Dr. Peled was featured on ABC News 7 in San Francisco speaking about performing breast cancer surgery on a breast cancer activist in San Francisco. She discussed the procedure and how a new device called a Biozorb is helping to make a target for radiologists in follow-up procedures. Dr. Peled is on the cutting-edge for breast cancer treatment in San Francisco.
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Breast Cancer Advocate Reveals Why BioZorb Was Right for Her

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Breast Cancer Advocate Reveals Why BioZorb Was Right for Her

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Dr. Anne Peled Implant Reconstruction

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Dr. Anne Peled explains the different types of breast implants used in breast implant surgery. Learn more or contact Dr. Peled about breast reconstruction or enhancement surgery today at https://annepeledmd.com
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Dr Anne Peled Interviewed About Breast Cancer Awareness Month KTVU FOX2

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Dr Anne Peled Interviewed About Breast Cancer Awareness Month KTVU FOX2
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Breast Cancer Surgeon Is 'Shocked' to Learn She Has Breast Cancer — and Then Becomes a Survivor

"I kept reminding myself, 'Remember what you tell your patients,' " Dr. Anne Peled tells PEOPLE

By Wendy Grossman Kantor 
July 26, 2019 01:53 PM
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GENE COHEN PHOTOGRAPHY

In November 2017, Dr. Anne Peled of San Francisco was taking a shower and doing the monthly self-exam she encourages her patients to do when she felt a lump in her right breast. The now-38-year-old board-certified plastic and breast surgeon told herself it was probably nothing. After all, she’s a super-fit pescatarian, tri-athlete and distance runner, and she has no family history of breast cancer.

But that lump didn’t go away.

On Dec. 7, 2017, she had a biopsy. The next morning, Dr. Peled was preparing to perform a double mastectomy and implant reconstruction on a patient when her phone rang.

“I was getting ready to put on my gloves,” she tells PEOPLE. But she saw her pathologist was calling and answered the phone. “I was sure she was going to tell me it was a cyst and I was going to go on with my day.” 

Instead, the pathologist told the breast cancer surgeon that she had breast cancer herself.

“I was so shocked,” says Dr. Peled. “There were no words. Literally, I tell women breast cancer diagnoses multiple times a week. What I tell all my patients is: ‘This is very treatable. Most breast cancer nowadays — not all — is very curable.’ I kept reminding myself, ‘Remember what you tell your patients.'”

It was a Friday when she received her diagnosis. She immediately began assembling her team. That afternoon she had a breast ultrasound. On Monday, she had a breast MRI.

Dr. Peled’s the type of mom who makes M&M pancakes and regularly piles her three kids and two yellow labs, Kahlua and Clementine, into the car and drives them to the beach or on a hike. “I make my kids go on adventures,” she says. In April, they stayed in a treehouse in Costa Rica.

Husband and wife Dr. Anne Peled and Dr. Ziv Peled, operating on a mutual patient
 
DR. ANNE PELED

But after she was diagnosed with breast cancer, Dr. Peled decided not to tell her young children she had cancer. Her now-8-year-old son Simon, and now-5-year-old twin daughters, Charlotte and Eveline, have friends whose grandparents died of cancer, and she didn’t want them to worry.

Her parents stayed with the children. She scheduled her surgery in Vancouver, Washington, with a surgical team she trusted and would give her the type of hidden-scar surgery she performs herself.

A week later, she came home, told the kids mommy couldn’t lift them because she had “an ouchie,” went back to work and signed up for a 10K.

“By the time I came home, I felt great. And my kids didn’t have any idea that anything had happened,” she says. “In many ways, I look better than how I started, which is pretty amazing.”

The day she learned she didn’t need chemotherapy, she and her husband, fellow surgeon Ziv Peled, toasted with champagne.

“I got really lucky,” she says. “After that first scary phone call, every other piece of information I had after that was great news.”

Dr. Anne Peled with her husband, Dr. Ziv Peled
 
DR. ANNE PELED

Dr. Peled wore her running clothes to her radiation treatments and ran afterwards every day.

“It would clear the space in my head,” she says. “We have really good data that shows that exercise decreases recurrence. I take hormone-blocking pills and I exercise. I think of this as part of my treatment.”

She finished radiation in March and ran the 10K the following month.

Dr. Peled worked with Athleta to design their second https://athleta.gap.com/browse/product.do?pid=869609#pdp-page-content" Empower Bra. She is an incredibly strong and inspirational woman and we are honored to have been able to work with her,” says Casey Schumacher, Athleta’s senior director of design. “Dr. Anne Peled brought invaluable insight, given both her personal and professional experience with breast cancer and reconstruction surgery.” 

Post-cancer bra shopping was something Dr. Peled hadn’t thought too deeply about until she had to do it for herself, she says. Some bras rub where incisions are. “And a lot of women have mobility restrictions, so options of zippers and clasps are important,” she says. “And the fabric — when you get radiation, your skin gets sunburned when you’re healing. So you don’t want the fabric to chafe or rub.”

Once a month, Dr. Peled travels the country to train other surgeons in the type of hidden-scar surgery technique she had herself, because she wants other women to have the “amazing care” that she had. She talks about the technique on social media and invites surgeons to come to her practice to watch and learn the technique.

“Many women don’t realize that not all lumpectomies are the same. A lot of times, there are big scars right over where the cancer was. And then they get closed without reshaping the breast,” she says. “Women get these holes in the breast where your tissue caves in — and that can be pretty disfiguring for women. You wake up in the morning and get out of the shower and you’re reminded every day.”

Dr. Peled wants women to know their options before they have breast cancer surgery.

“I feel lucky to have this job,” she tells PEOPLE. “In so many ways, it’s so scary. It’s so much more filled with hope than it used to be. Our treatments get better and better.

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Dr. Peled in Medium - Cancerversary

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Dr. Peled shared her Cancerversary story on //medium.com/@annepeledmd/cancerversary-946a5480c51b" target="_blank" rel="noopener" style="box-sizing: border-box; background-color: transparent; color: rgb(47, 47, 47); text-decoration: none !important; transition: all 0.5s ease 0s;">Medium and with Kevin M.D. 

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Dr. Anne Peled on ABC

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Dr. Peled was featured on ABC News 7 in San Francisco speaking about performing breast cancer surgery on a breast cancer activist in San Francisco.  She discussed the procedure and how a new device called a Biozorb is helping to make a target for radiologists in follow-up procedures.  Dr. Peled is on the cutting-edge for breast cancer treatment in San Francisco.
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Dr. Anne Peled In the Columbian

Dr. Anne Peled's story has been featured in the Columbian.  Please follow the link to read the well-written article by @MarissaHarshman.  

http://www.columbian.com/news/2018/jan/22/breast-cancer-surgeon-diagnosed-with-breast-cancer-advocates-oncoplastic-surgery/

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Dr. Anne Peled on ABC

Dr. Peled's story was featured on ABC 7 in the story Bay Area surgeon views breast cancer treatment from new angle.  Watch and read the whole story here to get more information on Dr. Peled's treatment and how her recovery is progressing.

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Dr. Anne Peled in WellAndGood.com

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Anne Peled MD BreastCancer Surgery

Dr. Peled was featured in the story titled "How this one bra could make a difference for breast cancer survivors, according to a cancer surgeon", where she discussed her experiences on both sides of Breast Cancer, as a surgeon that has helped hundreds of patients and as a patient who beat Breast Cancer.  Read the article here to learn more about Dr. Peled's story and the Athleta bra.

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Dr. Peled In Medium

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Dr Anne Peled In Medium

Dr. Peled was interviewed by Yitzi Weiner for his article “I’d Love To Take A Movement Like #Ilooklikeasurgeon One Step Further” With Dr. Anne Peled for Authority magazine.

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