Breast Reconstruction Information:An Overview

Jul 29


Aloysius Aucoin

Aloysius Aucoin

  • Share this article on Facebook
  • Share this article on Twitter
  • Share this article on Linkedin

A mastectomy may be one of the most difficult procedures for a woman to go through. The removal of a breast can cause significant damage to her self-esteem and body image. Once you have had a mastectomy, breast reconstruction can greatly improve your confidence and even your quality of life.


Advances in medicine and technology have provided breast cancer patients with a couple of options for treatment. Some women may choose to treat the cancer with radiation,Breast Reconstruction Information:An Overview Articles while others may have a mastectomy. When making a decision about treatment, one of the biggest concerns you might have is how you will look after a mastectomy. While it is true that radiation can cause hair loss, the change in appearance from a mastectomy is quite different. For many women, losing a breast can cause a great deal of damage to body image. Breast reconstruction is one option that can help you regain your confidence and positive self image.

Breast reconstruction is a procedure that restores the breast shape after a mastectomy. This can be achieved through the use of breast implants or flap techniques. The process typically requires several operations before the reconstruction will be complete. When you are considering the surgery, it is important to remain realistic about your expectations. Restoring the shape of the breast will help you look similar to your previous appearance and boost your self-esteem, but you will not look or feel exactly the same as you did before.

If only one breast was removed, the reconstruction will only recreate that breast. However, you may still need some type of surgery on the unaffected breast to make it look more similar to the reconstructed breast. Your doctor may recommend implants in both breasts to improve symmetry. Or you may need a breast reduction or breast lift. The reconstruction process may begin at the time of your mastectomy, or it can be done as a delayed procedure. Reconstruction using breast implants usually begins with the insertion of tissue expanders.

A tissue expander is inserted beneath your pectoral muscle. This balloon-like device is filled with saline in stages, slowly stretching the skin and soft tissues to make room for the implant. When the expansion is done, the tissue expander is removed and the permanent implant is inserted. Some types of tissue expanders are designed to be permanent implants. If the mastectomy or radiation has damaged too much of the tissue on your chest, there may not be enough healthy tissue to support a breast implant. In this situation, reconstruction can be completed using flap techniques.

Flap techniques involve the use of muscle, skin and fat from another area of the body to create the breast mound. Sometimes, the entire breast mound is recreated using the flap, but it is more often used to provide support for an implant. The muscle, fat, and skin may be taken from several different areas of your body, including your abdomen, buttocks, and back. When the breast reconstruction is complete, it may take you several weeks or even months to recover. You will experience soreness for a few weeks, and your doctor may prescribe pain medication during your recovery. You can expect to return to normal activities after about six weeks, but it may take longer.

Breast reconstruction is not a simple process, and it will likely require at least two surgical operations. With any surgery, there are risks of complications, such as infection or bleeding issues. Prior to your mastectomy, your doctor may recommend that you discuss breast reconstruction with a plastic surgeon. By consulting an experienced and skilled professional, you can decide if it is your best option.