Kathryn V. Isaac MD FRCSC MPH

Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon, Vancouver Coastal Health & Providence Health Care

Assistant Professor, University of British Columbia

Dr. Patricia Clugston Chair of Breast Reconstruction

View Points

“I am incredibly proud to champion the betterment of breast cancer care and breast reconstruction in this province.

Studies show that emotional, social and functional well-being, vitality, body image and general mental health are improved in women who have breast reconstruction surgery after their mastectomy.

The current journey to physical and emotional recovery for women with breast cancer can be a difficult one as in addition to dealing with the disease, they also have to navigate the breast cancer treatment system, which can prove challenging.”


Web Sites

Compilation of web-based resources:

VGH + UBC Foundation: Transforming breast cancer journeys for BC patients


VGH +UBC Hospital Foundation


BC Cancer


Canadian Cancer Society British Columbia and Yukon


The University of British Columbia

Faculty of MedicineDepartment of Surgery

Vancouver Coastal Health & UBC Hospital website on Breast Reconstruction


Canadian Society of Plastic Surgeons


European Association of Plastic Surgeons


World Society for Reconstructive Microsurgery


Online Atlas of Microsurgery

Caution graphic !



Dr. Kathryn Isaac studied medicine and completed her Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery training at the University of Toronto. She subsequently completed a craniofacial fellowship at Boston’s Children Hospital and subspecialized further in breast reconstruction at the Health Sciences Center in Winnipeg. In addition to her surgical training, she completed a Master’s degree in Public Health at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. In September 2018, Dr. Isaac moved to Vancouver and has provided her skills for VGH and UBC Hospital ever since.

For recent research publications, see below:

PUBMED: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=isaac+kathryn

Breast Reconstruction

Breast reconstruction is an option for women undergoing a partial (lumpectomy) or total mastectomy.  Reconstruction of the breast aims to recreate the shape, feel, and appearance of the breast. Women who choose to have reconstruction do so for many reasons. It is a personal decision. Reasons may include a feeling of being whole, a restoration of self, return to a sense of normal, emotional healing, avoiding the mastectomy scar/appearance, avoiding an external prosthesis.

There are many options for breast reconstruction.  In broad terms, the breast can be reconstructed with implants, your own tissue, or a combination of these. Reconstruction can begin at the time of the mastectomy/lumpectomy, defined as immediate, or at a later date after the mastectomy/lumpectomy, defined as delayed.

The recommended method of breast reconstruction depends on a number of factors and these will be discussed with you.  During your appointment, we review your breast cancer diagnosis, your goals, your health, your body, and discuss the type of reconstruction that would best be suited to you.  With the options available to you, we review the details of surgical procedure, recovery, risks, benefits, and alternatives. The preservation of the nipple and/or areola, as well as the scars, depend on your cancer, your breast size, and your overall health.

Breast Reconstruction using Implants

Breast Reconstruction using your own Tissue

Oncoplastic reconstruction