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Understanding the Various Breast Reconstruction Options

Dr. Amelia Tower explains some of the breast reconstruction options available.

Irving, Texas – February 13, 2020 –Breast reconstruction may be required by women who have undergone surgery for breast cancer. Surgeries can cause deformities that will need to be addressed. There are several types of reconstructive surgery, and most of them may require multiple operations. Some procedures are used in combination to ensure the successful reconstruction of the breast.

“When choosing a reconstructive surgery option, discuss all choices with your doctor to make the decision on which option is best for you based on your personal preferences and overall health.” said Dr. Tower. “Take time to get fully informed about the procedures, benefits, side effects, and long-term benefits.”

Here are some of the breast reconstruction procedures you may need;

  • Using implants – Breast implants are used to reconstruct the shape of the breast after surgery. The procedure can be done while you are undergoing cancer surgery or after. The types of implants used in reconstruction include silicone gel implants and saline implants. Silicone gel implants usually feel like natural breast tissues and can keep their shape even after the shell is broken. They are firm and will rarely rupture. Saline implants are filled with sterile water and are the most commonly used.
  • Using flap procedures – Flap procedures use the patient’s tissue to rebuild the shape of the breast after surgery. Tissue can be collected from the buttocks, thighs, back, or tummy. Tissue flaps will always look and feel natural compared to implants. However, the patient may undergo more surgery, which may leave scars or cause complications to the tissue donor sites. Sometimes tissue flap procedures are used alongside implants.
  • Nipple and areola reconstruction – When a mastectomy is performed, the nipple is removed together with the breast. The nipple and areola reconstruction procedure is often the last phase of the breast reconstruction procedure. It may be done 3 to 4 months after surgery as an outpatient procedure. The tissue used is often taken from the newly reconstructed breast of skin from any part of the body, usually the inner thigh.

While choosing the type of breast reconstruction, always consider your overall health, the size, and location of your cancer, size of your breast, type of surgery, amount of available tissue, other treatments you may need, and recovery time,” continued Dr. Tower. “Your doctor can help you answer any questions you may have regarding this procedure.”

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