If you have been diagnosed with breast cancer and are facing a mastectomy, you will undoubtedly begin thinking about your breast reconstruction options. It is important to understand what options are available and that there is no right choice when it comes to breast reconstruction, only the choice that is right for you.
Immediate vs Delayed Reconstruction
You can choose to undergo breast reconstruction immediately after a mastectomy. This allows preservation of breast skin and can provide natural looking results without the need to wait for reconstruction. In immediate reconstruction, an implant is placed or flap reconstruction is performed at the same time as the mastectomy.
Our recommendation will most likely be an immediate-delayed reconstruction. At the time of mastectomy, the plastic surgeon places a tissue expander, which will help stretch the skin and muscle, preparing you for your final reconstruction. This allows patients to undergo chemotherapy or radiation without damaging the final reconstruction.
Finally, a delayed reconstruction may also be a good choice for some patients. In delayed reconstruction, a mastectomy is performed with your general surgeon. Then, weeks, months, or years later, you may begin breast reconstruction with your plastic surgeon. Ultimately, delaying breast reconstruction allows you more time to make your decision regarding reconstruction. It may also be recommended by your doctors if you are a smoker or if you will be undergoing radiation therapy.
Implants vs Tissue Flap
Breast reconstruction can be accomplished using either breast implants or tissues from your own body. Both flap-based reconstruction and implant reconstruction provide women with a variety of options for reconstruction to suit each woman’s individual needs.
Some women choose not to reconstruct breasts, often referred to as “going flat.” When you choose this option, you can also choose to use prosthetic breasts that can be worn with a bra under clothing.
Every woman makes her own choices about her reconstruction. At Park Meadows Cosmetic Surgery, we can help you understand your options and make an educated decision to fit your goals and lifestyle. Call us today at 720-457-4461 to schedule your consultation with an experienced Denver breast reconstruction surgeon.