What is Breast Reconstruction?

Breast reconstruction

Breastcancer.org predicts as that many as 12% of U.S. women (approximately one in eight) will develop invasive breast cancer at some point during their lifetime and it is the second most commonly diagnosed cancer in women after skin cancer.

Depending on the stage of the cancer, different treatment options are available, but many women find that they need to have all of part of their breast tissue removed in order to eradicate the cancer cells from their body. Some women, usually with a strong family history of female cancers including cancer of the breast, choose to undergo a procedure to remove both breasts in an attempt to avoid breast cancer in the future.

Types of breast removal

A lumpectomy is the name given to a partial removal of the breast tissue.

A mastectomy is the name given to total breast removal.

Understandably, this is an upsetting time for many patients. The loss of their breasts can impact on a woman’s confidence and femininity at a time when she wants, needs and deserves to feel as good about herself as possible.

Breast reconstruction is an entirely different procedure to a breast lift or augmentation, and is almost always performed as a result of a mastectomy or lumpectomy. However, it can fully restore a patient’s breasts and give them back their shape and self-esteem.

Can I have my breasts reconstructed at the same time as my lumpectomy or mastectomy?

The idea of being left without breasts is understandably upsetting. Some patients are keen to undergo reconstruction surgery as soon as possible so regain their shape and femininity.

It is possible for breast reconstruction surgery to take place at the same time as a mastectomy, but whether or not this is advisable will depend on your personal circumstances. If you require radiotherapy treatment as a part of your ongoing care, then you will almost certainly be advised to wait until the radiotherapy is complete.

If you want to inquire about the possibility of an immediate reconstruction, you should contact and speak to Aesthetic Surgical Associates' doctor and surgeon.

If I have reconstruction surgery, is cancer more likely to return?

Reconstruction surgery uses artificial implants in the place of natural tissue. Having a reconstruction doesn’t make breast cancer more likely to return.

doctor doing operation

Types of breast reconstruction

There are two main varieties of breast reconstruction. One of the most popular choices is implant reconstruction. This involves placing saline or silicone implants into the chest cavity which creates the appearance of natural breasts.

If the skin across your chest is tight, your surgeon may recommend using a temporary expandable implant for some time. This will help the skin to stretch gradually until it is ready to accept a permanent implant.

Another option is often referred to as ‘flap reconstruction’ and involves using tissue from another part of your body – normally from the thighs, buttocks or stomach – to your chest. This is a more complex procedure and leaves more scarring than using an implant.

I only had a single mastectomy, can I have a single breast reconstruction?

Absolutely. A great cosmetic surgeon will work to ensure that your reconstructed breast matches your natural breast as closely as possible.

Nipple Reconstruction

Once your breast reconstruction has taken place, and your breasts have settled into their final position, your surgeon will be able to reconstruct your nipple, either using your original nipple, or creating an entirely new one using the skin on your new breast.

Many patients don’t realize that their new nipple, along with their new breasts, will be devoid of sensation. They will, however, look beautiful and natural and help you to feel confident and sexy once more.

To know more information about Breast Reconstruction you deserve to know, contact Aesthetic Surgical Associates today.