reconstruction is surgery to create a new breast in place of a breast that has
been removed during mastectomy. A breast mound is created that comes as close
as possible to the shape and look of a natural breast. The surgery may be done
to reconstruct either one breast or both breasts.
Making a decision about breast reconstruction
decision to have breast reconstruction is a personal one. It depends on how you
think you will feel after a mastectomy. If you think you would feel
uncomfortable with a flat chest or wearing a false breast (prosthesis), you may
consider breast reconstruction. If you do not want to have any more surgeries,
you may choose to forgo it.
you are considering breast reconstruction, talk with your doctor about it
before your mastectomy. Your doctor can tell you whether reconstruction is an
option for you, and if so, what type of reconstructive surgery might work they
recommend for your circumstances. Factors affecting the type that is
recommended for you can include:
size and location of the cancer, which determines the amount of skin and tissue
to be removed in the mastectomy.
amount of tissue removed from the breast.
your chest tissue has been damaged by radiation therapy or aging, and is not
healthy enough for reconstruction surgery.
overall health and medical history.
again, be sure to discuss the common risks with your doctor before making a
What are the different types of breast
There are two main types of
An expander is used to create a breast mound, and expand the skin and muscle
allowing the placement of a filled breast implant.
- Autologous tissue. A person’s own body tissues are used to reconstruct a new
breast mound. Reconstruction surgeries leave you with two surgical wounds: the
chest and the site where tissue was removed.
You may also decide to have
other procedures to improve how your new breast shape looks.
Healing after surgery
Immediate reconstruction surgery has a longer recovery time
than for mastectomy alone. With autologous tissue surgery, there is a second
surgery site that will need to be cared for as it heals.
is important to know that it can take several months before the final results
of breast reconstruction can be seen. Be patient as your body heals.