Doctor insights on:
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 moreSee 4 more doctor answers
Any advice? What size breast implant do doctors put in when reconstructing the breast after a mastectomy?
Size to fit: Your plastic surgeon will take measurements of the chest to help determine what size implants to use. A woman who is 5'2", 100 lbs would not get the same implant as a woman who is 5'9" and 200 lbs for example, so the size varies from person to person. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Varies w/technique: In general, there are two reconstruction options: (1)tissue expanders to stretch the skin of the chest wall, followed by implants(2)tissue transfer, where skin, fat(+/-muscle) are brought over to the chest wall from the abdomen or back. Both of these options can look very natural (esp w/nipple-areolar sparing surgery). Option (2) feels more natural but w/limited sensation (&bigger operation). ...Read more
Flap or implant: Basically - you can use your own tissue or reconstruct with a breast implant. There are several options when your own tissue is used including tram (uses the rectus muscle in the abdomen with attached skin and fat), latissimus (the muscle going from shoulder to back - usually for relatively small defects), diep (uses skin and fat on abdomen, but preserves the muscle). ...Read moreSee 9 more doctor answers
2-6 weeks depending: There are many different types of breast reconstruction procedure including breast implants and various techniques that use our own tissue (flaps and fat grafting). Recovery time and time off work vary based on the complexity of the surgery (2-6 weeks). The more complex flap procedures (like the diep or gap flap) usually require 4-6 weeks off work (i recommend you plan for 6 weeks to be safe). ...Read moreSee 4 more doctor answers
Does breast cancer reconstruction surgery look natural? I have to undergo a double mastectomy for breast cancer and am deciding whether to have breast cancer reconstruction surgery. Would the surgery leave my breasts feeling hard and unnatural? I might ch
No depending on how: Tram flap with your own tissue movement to recreate your breasts may have areas of fat necrosis - hardness. Subpectoral muscle silicone implants are more natural feeling but you may get a capsule a tight feeling . Best answer-- ask your plastic surgeon his experience - they have pictures good and bad to give you an idea of results then you can make an itelligent choice of what is right. ...Read moreSee 3 more doctor answers
Multiple sources: Check the local county medical society, the state license board for disciplinary actions, the american board & society of plastic surgeons for certification and membership, operating room nurses, and other patients of the prospective md's for references. Most of this can now be done "online" via google. ...Read moreSee 2 more doctor answers
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 moreSee 2 more doctor answers
Lots of options: Basically there are 2 options for breast reconstruction after tumor resection. Option #1 is to move some of the patient's own tissue from another site to the breast. This is a great option, but not for everyone, as the surgery can be long and complicated. Option #2 is to use a breast implant to replace the missing breast tissue. Best to discuss with a board certified plastic surgeon. ...Read moreSee 2 more doctor answers
How long after breast reconstruction implants placed after 4 months of tissue expanders does the swelling go completely down?
Varies: Most swelling after surgery resolves by 6 weeks or so. However, a lot depends on what was performed exactly. Swapping out expanders for implants is usually quite straight forward. Sometimes more extensive surgery is required for the best results eg removing scar tissue, reshaping (internal, external, or both), fat grafting, etc. Your plastic surgeon will know best for your specific situation. ...Read moreSee 3 more doctor answers
Will i need to keep getting mammograms after breast reconstruction? Is there enough of my own breast tissue left after mastectomy and breast reconstruction to make imaging worthwhile?
Yes and No : If you had a single breast complete mastectomy, no more mammogram on that side. However, if you did not have both breast mastectomies, you still have the other bresst that is at increased risk given the history. So you need to continue screening mammograms for the other breast. ...Read moreSee 4 more doctor answers
How does the doctor use the lattisimus dorsi for reconstruction of breast after a bi-lateral mastectomy?
Breast surgery: Three basic forms of breast reconstruction exist. You can use your own tissue, implants or a combination of the previous two techniques. Your own tissue can be used in the form of the diep flap, pap flap, sgap flap or fat grafting. Implants can be done in one stage or two stage. Two stage reconstructions are started by placing expanders at the time of mastectomy. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
How long after breast reconstruction and implant placement after 4 months of tissue expanders do I need to wait to do strength, aerobics or eliptical?
How do surgeons deal with facial asymmetries when performing cancer reconstruction surgery? I recently had a surgery for facial melanoma on my left cheek. I will soon undergo facial cancer reconstruction surgery to restore my physical appearance to an acc
Can be outpatient: Mastectomy means removal of the breast tissue. The extent depends on the indication, generally cancer or risk of cancer. The approach also depends on involvement of the overlying skin, associated lymph nodes and decision whether to perform reconstruction immediately or delay it. You should speak with your surgeon about options. ...Read more
Varies: The mastectomy would take about an hour, but the reconstruction time would vary based on technique. Tissue expanders for later implants would be another 1-2 hrs, give or take, but free flap tissue transfer reconstruction can take several hours. These general times are variable based upon patient habitus and surgeon differences. Good luck. ...Read moreSee 2 more doctor answers
Options: It is important to know that scars cannot be removed. They can, however, be made to appear less obvious. There are multiple treatments including topicals, surgery, lasers, and needling. A full examination is necessary to determine the best approach. ...Read more
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