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Doctor insights on: How Do Surgeons Reconstruct The Breast After Mastectomy

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How do surgeons reconstruct the breast after mastectomy?

How do surgeons reconstruct the breast after mastectomy?

Implants v. "Flaps": In general, there are two different techniques for reconstruction following a mastectomy. In one, tissue expanders are placed under the chest wall muscles and then are slowly expanded over months until "new" skin forms; they are then removed and replaced by implants. The other technique involves transferring tissue from one part of the body such as the abdominal wall or back to the chest wall. ...Read more

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Dr. Vikram Patel
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Dr. Barry Rosen
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Mastectomy (Definition)

A mastectomy is complete removal of all visible breast tissue. Different variations exist, some of which spare some or all of ...Read more


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What exactly does a breast reconstruction tissue expander do? It's been almost a year since my mastectomy. During my breast reconstruction consultation, my surgeon mentioned using a tissue expander to make room for my new breast. How does this work? .

What exactly does a breast reconstruction tissue expander do? It's been almost a year since my mastectomy. During my breast reconstruction consultation, my surgeon mentioned using a tissue expander to make room for my new breast. How does this work?

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It Expands..: After a mastectomy, assuming you are going to have an implant reconstruction, a space needs to be created to accomodate a soft implant. A tissue expander is like a deflated balloon that the doctor pumps up in their office (usually weekly) afte putting it in flat. It creates the space for a permanent implant to be put later. ...Read more

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Does the same surgeon who does the mastectomy also do the breast reconstruction? I got a referral to an excellent surgeon for my mastectomy, and during the consult, he told me I should think about whether i want an immediate breast reconstruction. It didn

Does the same surgeon who does the mastectomy also do the breast reconstruction? I got a referral to an excellent surgeon for my mastectomy, and during the consult, he told me I should think about whether i want an immediate breast reconstruction. It didn

No,a plastic surgeon: No, usually your breast oncologic surgeon performs the mastectomy and refres you for reconstruction to a plastic & reconstructive surgeon.An immediate breast reconstruction is a common procedure that is performed at the same time as the mastectomy.The type of surgery varies depending on your choice, your body size and shape and your plastic surgeon.Creation of a breast mound is the first operation. ...Read more

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Is it safe to have breast reconstruction done at the same time as a mastectomy? My surgeon has said we can do the mastectomy and then immediately do the breast reconstruction. I like the idea, but am worried about the extra time that would take. Is it saf

Is it safe to have breast reconstruction done at the same time as a mastectomy? My surgeon has said we can do the mastectomy and then immediately do the breast reconstruction. I like the idea, but am worried about the extra time that would take. Is it saf

Yes: An expander can be placed at the time of mastectomy. This is a temporary space filler that allows you to complete chemo and/or radiation and then complete the final reconstruction months later. This is know as immediate-delayed reconstruction. Speak with the breast surgeon and plastic surgeon for details. ...Read more

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Can care less about having breasts. Will a surgeon perform a mastectomy on me for the purposes of helping my back pain?

Can care less about having breasts. Will a surgeon perform a mastectomy on me for the purposes of helping my back pain?

Breast reduction: Your complaint is actually not uncommon. Get a referral to a plastic surgeon and they will explain the process to get this procedure approved. ...Read more

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Dr. Vikram Patel
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Why is it that surgeons cut across the breast area when doing a mastectomy?

Why is it that surgeons cut across the breast area when doing a mastectomy?

Transverse incision: is more popular than oblique (cut) it is more cosmetically better accepted by woman , can wear low cut dress with out showing the scar , will make breast reconstruction easy , will have less tension so less pain and heals better ...Read more

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What methods are used to reconstruct the breast after a mastectomy?

What methods are used to reconstruct the breast after a mastectomy?

Various techniques: Techniques for breast reconstruction have changed over the years. Most reconstruction is implant based -- either using a tissue expander to help stretch the muscle and skin before using an implant, or direct to implant reconstruction. Surgeons can also use flaps which transfer soft tissue, +/- skin, +/- muscle. These may come from the belly, the back the buttocks or the thighs. ...Read more

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What is the recovery period after having a tissue expansion treatment done? After my mastectomy, my doctor suggested that I have a tissue expansion procedure done to help reconstruct my breasts. I have just spent a lot of time recovering from cancer, and

First : First and foremost, i wish you health, courage, and strength in your recovery from breast cancer. Tissue expansion is a very common approach to breast reconstruction after mastectomy. Very nice results can be achieved by expanding your own tissue to accommodate permanent breast implants. This approach gives you a lot of control over final size selection, and avoids the risks associated with operations that remove tissue from other parts of your body to replace breast tissue. If i understand your question correctly, you have already had a mastectomy, and are now considering having tissue expanders placed after having healed from the first operation. The operation to secondarily place the expanders involves using the same incision made for the mastectomy, creating a space under your chest muscle (pectoralis major, or "pec"), and sometimes using donor material to create a nicely shaped lower breast contour. There is some tightness and discomfort associated with placing the expanders, and i typically recommend to my patients that they take about a week off of work. Most women who work a desk job can return to their normal job functions in a week and not require narcotic pain meds during the day, but women who work more strenuous physical jobs may need to be off work or on light duty (lifting less than 15 lbs) for about 4 weeks. Depending on your plastic surgeon's preferences, you will likely begin the expansion process about 3 weeks after the surgery to have the expanders placed. This involves coming in to your plastic surgeon's office every 1-3 weeks to have the expanders filled with a moderate volume of saline each time until you reach your desired size. The expansion itself involves minimal discomfort, as a small needle is used to access and fill the expanders. You can return to work on the same day or the day following your expansions. Surgery to place your permanent implants can proceed about 8 weeks after your size goal is reached, and the permanent implants will feel softer and have a much more natural appearance than the filled expanders. All the best to you in your recovery, dr. Skourtis. ...Read more

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After a mastectomy and they reconstruct your breast can you tell the difference?

Maybe: It depends on the type of reconstruction technique, timing of it, and scar already on the chest wall. Immediate reconstruction after skin sparing mastectomy gives the best result cosmetically, but if delayed reconstruction is known at the time of mastectomy a skin sparing technique can also be used which will look better. Nipple spring technique is also becoming more popular. ...Read more

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Dr. Vikram Patel
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