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Cancer survivor Suzanne Somers discusses breast surgery

WENN, Wednesday, February 1, 2012, 11:11am (PST)

Cancer survivor Suzanne Somers is sporting a new set of breasts after going under the knife for stem cell reconstruction.

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The actress was diagnosed with Stage 1 breast cancer in 2000 and later underwent a lumpectomy to remove the malignant tumor.

The former "Three's Company" star tells People magazine, "My jaw dropped when they took the bandages off. Sixty-five percent of my breast was gone. I had a DD on one side, and on the other side I could barely fill a B cup. ... My breasts were a huge part of my career. ... I had these beautiful breasts, which I had never appreciated. Then I looked down and went, 'Oh!' That was hard."

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Embarrassed by her new lopsided silhouette, Somers began wearing a prosthetic, but even that had its downfalls.

She continues, "When I went out, I wore a prosthetic in my bra that would push up what little I had. A couple of times it slipped out. I looked down and there was something around my waist that shouldn't be there! It was mortifying."

Finally the fitness expert signed up to be part of a new clinical trial, which would involve plastic surgeon Dr. Joel Aronowitz reconstructing her right breast with stem cells harvested from her stomach fat. The experimental procedure went off without a hitch.

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A now-confident Somers adds, "It's soft and feels just like the other one. This is a game-changer. I'm proud to have started the ball rolling. ... I didn't know I missed having a breast that much. ... It's wonderful to look down and see no scars, no foreign objects -- just me."

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