Dr. 90210 - Season 2, Episode 3
Aired March, 14 2005
On this week's Dr. 90210, two women undergo the last stages of their breast reconstruction while Dr. Li is continues trying to have a baby.
Surgeon: Dr. Linda Li
Veronica is 38 years old from Pico Rivera, California. A few years ago, Veronica found out that she had breast cancer. Fortunately, she only underwent a lumpectomy where the tumor was removed without having to take out the whole breast. However, half of Veronica's breast was removed, which made her feel less than attractive. Her boyfriend at the time, Fernando, loving Veronica so much, decided to stick with her, no matter what lay ahead. The two eventually married.
Dr. Li would be performing Veronica's breast reconstruction. For Veronica, this is the last stage of her reconstruction. Veronica comes to Dr. Li's office for a consultation visit to discuss the procedure. Dr. Li explains that the radiation treatment that Veronica underwent left her with damaged skin, which makes it difficult to work with. However, Veronica did not have to go through a mastectomy and was able to keep most of her breast and nipple.
Veronica has her surgery, while her husband Fernando waits. Dr. Li explains that the radiation was damaging to the skin, causing scars and the skin to contract. This makes the reconstruction difficult because good elastic skin is needed. So closing up the incision was hard because the skin is like paper thin. However, the reconstruction turned out nicely. Dr. Li informs Fernando that it will take a while for Veronica to heal up.
One week after her surgery, Veronica comes back to Dr. Li's office for her post-op visit. She is so happy and thankful to Dr. Li for the work she did. Veronica is happy for her new life. Now, she wants to move on and is looking forward to having children.
Four weeks after surgery, Veronica's breasts look more natural. After 2 ½ years, she feels like a woman again. Veronica had five surgeries in two years and she is happy to have a family that helped her through this.
Surgeon: Dr. Linda Li
Lizetta is 48 years old from Burbank, California. She has completed 80% of her reconstruction. Her mother and her grandmother both had breast cancer. So having cancer herself, was depressing. Lizetta is an actress and former runway model, and she does voice-over acting.
At Dr. Li's office, Lizetta talks about her breast reconstruction surgery with the doctor, which includes nipple reconstruction. Lizetta has already had reconstructive surgery done to her right breast, which was performed by another doctor. Dr. Li will now perform reconstructive surgery on the left breast. Dr. Li is there not only to perform Lizetta's surgery, but also there to support her.
During surgery, Dr. Li removes the expander, which is a temporary implant, and then places the permanent saline implant. Although Lizetta had radical surgery, her skin is in great shape. Four after surgery, she is ready to go home. Reconstruction makes Dr. Li feel good about what she does.
Soon after, Lizetta has another surgery day, this time for her nipple reconstruction, which will be the last phase of her reconstructive surgery. Dr. Li cuts a flap of skin, and recreates it to look like a real nipple. Lizetta can choose to have it tattooed to make the nipple look even more natural.
Four weeks after her surgery, Lizetta is back at Dr. Li's office for her final post-op visit. For Lizetta, it is all coming together. Her breasts have terrific symmetry and feels like her breasts are complete. It gives her confidence as a woman.
After having her breast reconstruction, it seems like Lizetta's life is back on track. She feels like this is a new beginning for her and feels like herself again. Lizetta says that having cancer was the darkest time of her life, but always had to look towards the light at the end.
Much like her patient Veronica, Dr. Li also wants to have a baby. Last episode, Dr. Li had to wait for her cervix to heal after the surface layer was shaved off due to abnormal cells. Now it was time for another routine papsmear to see if there are any residual abnormal cells.
Dr. Li's gynecologist Dr. Park gives her a call and tells her that the test came back positive with pre-cancerous cells. As Dr. Li cries, her husband, Dr. Fulcher is there to comfort her.
Back at Good Samaritan Hospital, Dr. Li undergoes another procedure to have the abnormal cells removed. Dr. Park shaves off the outer layer of the cervix, but a repeat procedure puts Dr. Li in more risk during pregnancy. So, Dr. Park takes off the least amount of cervix layer possible. Find out next week what happens as a result.