Breast Reconstruction Surgery

Breast Reconstruction Surgery

Breast Reconstruction Surgery
Women who have aggressive forms of breast cancer, or who are at high risk of developing the disease, sometimes choose to have a mastectomy, the surgical removal of one or both breasts. Some patients may then choose to have surgery to reconstruct their breasts to restore their form and shape. During this procedure, doctors can replace any skin, breast tissue or a nipple that they may have removed during the surgery. (If you still need radiation therapy after your mastectomy, your doctor may suggest you wait for reconstructive surgery until after you finish treatment.) Breast implants, filled with either silicone or saline, can be used to reshape your breast, or you can even use your own tissue, a procedure called flap surgery. Both breast implants and flap surgery are complex procedures, each with their own risks; they may require second surgeries to position the breasts correctly. Most insurance companies will cover this type of reconstructive surgery. Learn more about breast reconstruction with expert advice from Sharecare.

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    A Surgery, answered on behalf of
    I think breast cancer reconstructive surgery has gone through a lot of different changes over the years. Initially reconstruction wasn’t the focus—historically the focus was treating the cancer itself. As we've gotten better and better at treating the cancer, we've really started addressing the whole person and recreating the breast as a whole. Today, I would say most patients choose some type of breast reconstruction. As technology has advanced, we can create a better aesthetic breast mound, and as implants have changed and gotten better and better, we have better tools to shape and restore the breast shape to what it was before, and sometimes even better aesthetic outcomes than before surgery.

    Trinity Health is a Catholic health care organization that acts in accordance with the Catholic tradition and does not condone or support all practices covered in this site. In case of emergency call 911. This site is educational and not a substitute for professional medical advice, always seek the advice of a qualified healthcare provider.
     
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    A Plastic Surgery, answered on behalf of
    How do I care for my incisions after reconstructive breast surgery?
    Caring for your incisions after reconstructive breast surgery is vital. In this video, Natalie Driessen, MD, a plastic and reconstructive surgeon at Riverside Community Hospital, describes care you should take, including keeping them clean and dry. 
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    A Surgical Oncology, answered on behalf of
    Why Would Someone Opt for a Tummy Tuck When They Have Breast Reconstruction?
    Breast reconstruction after breast cancer is tailored for the individual. In this video, Elisa Port, MD, a surgeon at The Mount Sinai Medical Center, explains why many women may opt for a tummy tuck when they have reconstruction.
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    This is a very personal decision, however we try to emphasize that while right this instant your physical appearance might not be the most important thing to you, over time (once your cancer is treated,) it may take on greater importance for you. Breast reconstruction often helps patients with their body image after surgery. Our current mastectomy and reconstruction techniques are so good that sometimes patients comment that their loved ones can hardly believe they have had a mastectomy.
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    A , Plastic Surgery, answered

    The major risks of delayed prosthetic breast reconstruction include bleeding and infection. Bleeding or a hematoma can occur and require immediate exploration. Infection may require immediate removal of the implants with drainage tube placement. A deep venous thrombus is associated with calf pain especially upon extension of the foot. Shortness of breath may be a sign of a pulmonary embolus which requires immediate anti-coagulation. Other risks include: skin loss, fat atrophy, capsular contracture (scar tissue around the implant), seroma formation, scarring and ruptured implants.

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    A Plastic Surgery, answered on behalf of

    Simultaneous breast reconstruction is the building of a breast mound at the same exact time that your original breast tissue is being removed for the treatment of cancer. However, this option may not appeal to you.

    There are several disadvantages to simultaneous breast reconstruction. If there is a recurrence of cancer, the reconstruction may need to be modified. If there are complications post-surgery, you may need to have more surgeries. Sometimes you may need small revision surgeries or matching procedures on the opposing breast. Rarely, your doctor may determine that you need radiation after your surgery, which can compromise reconstructed breast tissue.

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    A , Plastic Surgery, answered

    There are risks of delayed autologous tissue breast reconstruction, similar to those of most surgical procedures. Most common complications include bleeding or a hematoma. The second most common complication includes infection (0.6%). Other risks include: deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolus, skin necrosis, fat atrophy, cellulitis, seroma formation, need for reoperation, general anesthesia risks, and death. 

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    A answered
    Because the consequences of cancer are as unique as the woman fighting the disease, the results of breast reconstruction can be unpredictable. Stay positive, but know that several surgeries may be necessary. Complete breast reconstruction often involves several stages of surgery, from the mastectomy until creation of the nipple-areola complex.
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    A answered
    There are several advantages to free flap breast reconstruction:
    • The breast is made from real tissue from the patient.
    • The flap cannot deflate like an implant.
    • The flap reconstruction does not have to be replaced over time like an implant.
    • The risk of implant complication such as infection and capsular contracture is eliminated.
    • The bottom half of the abdomen is less bloated because of the removal of the tissue and fat for the new breast.
    • The strength of the abdominal muscles is maintained, preventing back problems and other complications.

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  • 5 Answers
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    A Transplant Surgery, answered on behalf of
    Breast reconstruction after breast cancer surgery can help improve a woman's body image. If a woman is not comfortable with how the chest looks after breast surgery, reconstruction is an option to help restore the chest to a natural appearance.
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