Breast implants are a good option for cancer patients who do not require radiation therapy, and for women without excess fatty tissue. The recovery from the initial expander placement surgery and from the permanent implant surgery is usually quicker than flap surgery. It may be easier to control the final size of the reconstructed breast with implant reconstruction. Breast implants also yield good final results.
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Johns Hopkins Medicine answered
Tara Whitworth, MSN, Nursing, answeredBreast implants can be a good option for women following cancer. A tissue expander is inserted at the time of mastectomy and gradually filled with saline over a length of time in order to gradually stretch the skin and muscle. Once the desired size is achieved, the tissue expander is removed and replaced with a permanent implant.
Stuart Linder, MD, Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, answered
Breast implants may be useful for women following mastectomies, however, those who have had radiation should consider possibly having autologous breast tissue, that is, tissue taken as flap tissue brought directly into the mastectomy site, or free flap tissue transfer with increased blood supply. Breast implants are useful for reconstructing the breast, however, symmetry may not be exact unless implants are placed on the contralateral unaffected side.