New recruit changing lives of breast cancer patients on the Gold Coast
May 16, 2019
A new surgeon at John Flynn Private Hospital offers the rare service of treating breast cancer patients throughout their entire journey – including performing breast-conserving surgery to reduce the number of mastectomies.
Endocrine and breast oncoplastic reconstructive surgeon Dr Zackariah Clement has recently started consulting on the Gold Coast.
Dr Clement said: “As an oncoplastic and reconstructive surgeon, I can remove not only the breast cancer, I can also perform breast reconstruction using implant or tissue flaps, which eliminates the need to see another surgeon.”
“This is a lot less traumatic for patients who are already going through a terrible time in their lives.”
Dr Clement completed his medical training in Canberra, before moving to NSW where he completed his advanced training in surgery.
For the past two years he has been in Adelaide at the Flinders Medical Centre and Royal Adelaide Hospital, where he completed sub-specialty training through the Breast Surgeons ANZ in breast cancer management, oncoplastic and reconstructive surgery.
He also trained at the Mayo Clinic in the USA.
Due to his specialised training, Dr Clement has the ability to reduce the number of mastectomies by using more advanced surgical techniques.
Since commencing at John Flynn Private Hospital, Dr Clement has already offered breast-conserving surgery to two patients who thought they would require a mastectomy.
“I look at cancer surgery as a holistic surgery - not just removing the cancer, but also preserving as much of the normal and natural breast as possible and giving them a good cosmetic outcome in the end,” Dr Clement said.
The experienced surgeon also treats patients for benign breast disease, breast asymmetry and can also perform cosmetic breast surgery.
“Some women have very low self-esteem. I don’t see it just as a cosmetic problem, I see it as a functional problem, which might impact on their everyday life. So these patients should be offered corrective surgery to help with their confidence,” Dr Clement said.
The surgeon decided to pursue a career in this specialty due to the personal experience of breast cancer in his own family.