Making The Right Choice Regarding Breast Reconstruction Surgery After A Mastectomy

Patients who have undergone a mastectomy to treat cancer may wish to have breast reconstruction surgery to rebuild their breast(s). The time to talk to a plastic surgeon about breast reconstruction surgery is prior to having surgery to remove a tumour or breast(s).

Your breast surgeon and plastic surgeon will help you decide which option is best for you. When thinking about breast reconstruction surgery, there are basically two things to consider: What type of reconstruction surgery would be best for you and when to have the procedure done.

Types of Breast Reconstruction Surgery

  • Simultaneous breast reconstruction surgery is the reconstruction of your breast(s) at the same time as a mastectomy. If you won’t be having radiation treatments, you may be a good candidate for this procedure.

  • Staged breast reconstruction surgery is suggested for patients who will be undergoing radiation therapy. It is not wise to have radiation treatments done on a newly constructed breast.

  • Delayed breast reconstruction surgery is for women who did not discuss reconstruction options with a plastic surgeon prior to having a mastectomy.

Implants vs Flaps

There are two choices when it comes to having breast reconstruction surgery, implants and flaps. Implants are filled with silicone or saline (or a combination of the two) and can be placed after surgery or during a mastectomy. These implants are placed underneath the chest muscles. Flaps refer to the creation of a new breast using tissue from other body parts such as the buttocks, abdomen, back, or thighs. Transplantation to the breast area occurs by connecting new and old blood vessels.

Important Things to Think About:

  • Your surgeon might suggest having surgery on your other breast as well to match the reconstructed breast. A size reduction, enlargement or a lift may be recommended.

  • A reconstructed breast won’t be as sensitive as your natural breast was since the skin may have lost some sensation, but with time the skin can become more sensitive.

  • Advanced techniques have minimized the amount of scarring.

  • Breast reconstruction after a mastectomy can make you feel better about your looks and increase self-confidence.

  • Studies have shown that breast reconstruction surgery does not make the cancer return.

If you’re having a lumpectomy or a mastectomy or if you have had already, the staff at Cosmedical Rejuvenation Clinic will answer all your questions and help you to make the decisions that are right for you. Contact the clinic to book your confidential appointment with Dr. Atul Kesarwani.