What Is Breast Reconstruction Surgery
When a woman undergoes a mastectomy (removal of a breast), she must make many important decisions during a physically and emotionally challenging time. Many patients choose to have breast reconstruction to try to restore the look and feel of their breasts as well as their self-image.
If you choose to undergo breast reconstruction by Westchester plastic surgeon Dr. Samuel Beran, you also should decide when the reconstruction will be performed, either at the time of your mastectomy (immediate reconstruction) or at a later date (delayed reconstruction).
Advantages of immediate reconstruction include:
- An additional surgery and recovery period are avoided
- Scar tissue has not formed from the mastectomy
- Remaining breast skin is still stretched to the size and shape of the original breast
- You do not have to endure living without a breast
- Postoperative chemotherapy or radiation therapy usually does not need to be delayed
In some cases, such as intermediate or advanced breast cancer, Dr. Beran might suggest delayed reconstruction to allow time for the cancer to be controlled. Another reason to advise delayed reconstruction might be that some patients need time to think through their options thoroughly.
Once you have chosen to have breast reconstruction, you should decide whether you want your breast to be replaced with an implant or autologous tissue flap (your own body tissue). Each option has its own pros and cons and must be weighed by each individual woman according to her particular situation.
There are three types of implants that can be used in breast implant reconstruction:
- saline (sterile saltwater)
- silicone gel
- Ideal Implant, a structured, saline-filled implant that combines the natural look and feel of silicone gel with the safety and peace of mind of saline
In cases where there is not enough skin and muscle to cover the implant, existing tissue can be stretched over time with a tissue expander, or remaining muscle can be expanded immediately. The benefit of choosing implants (the more popular choice) is their aesthetic appearance, natural feel and minimal surgery time. Disadvantages include scar tissue build-up, possible rejection, rupture and the need for a second surgery to replace the tissue expander with an implant.
Autologous Tissue Flap Reconstruction
Autologous tissue flap breast reconstruction rebuilds the breast by transplanting live skin, fat and muscle from another part of the body, usually the abdomen, buttock, back, thigh or hip area. The advantages of flap reconstruction are that the reconstructed breast remains live tissue, the body does not reject it, and the rebuilt breast lasts for the patient’s lifetime. The disadvantages are that the surgery is longer and more complex, there are additional scars from the donor site, and recovery time is increased.
Highly Experienced In Breast Reconstruction Surgery
With years of specialized surgical experience, Dr. Samuel Beran has performed hundreds of breast reconstructions. He understands that this is a life-changing procedure that brings with it many difficult decisions. To make sure you are fully informed about your surgery options and understand exactly what results to expect, Dr. Beran will take all the time you need to make sure your questions are answered.
How Much Does Breast Reconstruction Surgery Cost?
Because every woman’s situation for needing breast reconstruction are unique, and the results she is seeking from breast reconstruction surgery are specific to her, the exact cost of surgery is determined by Dr. Beran after he has met with the patient and together, they have decided what type of procedure will bring her the best possible results. If you are a good candidate for breast reconstruction without a lift or other surgery, you may qualify for our special pricing. (Ideal Implant not eligible for special pricing.)
If you are interested in scheduling a free consultation for breast reconstruction surgery, please contact me. We will send you additional information prior to your appointment.