Breast reconstruction is a surgical method that restores form to your breast after mastectomy — surgical operation that eliminates your breast to deal with or prevent breast cancer.
The breast reconstruction procedure can begin at the time of your mastectomy (immediate reconstruction), or it can be accomplished later (delayed reconstruction). The breast reconstruction procedure normally requires two or more operations.
Breast reconstruction might not re-create the precise appearance and feel of your natural breast. However, the contour of your new breast may also restore a silhouette comparable to what you had before mastectomy.
Risks of breast reconstruction
Breast reconstruction with a breast implant consists of the chances of complications, including:
Breasts that do not match each other in size or appearance (asymmetry)
Implant rupture or deflation
Poor recuperation of incisions
Increased chance of future breast surgical operation to change or take away the breast implant
Changes in breast sensation
Scar tissue that forms and compresses the implant and breast tissue into a hard, unnatural structure (capsular contracture)
Risks related with anesthesia
How you prepare for breast reconstruction
Before your surgery, observe your doctor's precise guidelines on getting ready for the procedure. This may consist of guidelines on eating and drinking, adjusting current medications, and quitting smoking.
What you can expect from breast reconstruction
Breast reconstruction starts off with placement of a breast implant or tissue expander, either at the time of your mastectomy (immediate reconstruction) or at the time of a later procedure (delayed reconstruction). Breast reconstruction frequently requires a couple of operations, even if you decide on immediate reconstruction.
A breast implant is a spherical or teardrop-shaped silicone shell stuffed with salt water (saline) or silicone gel. Once constrained due to the fact of safety concerns, silicone gel implants are now safe.
A plastic surgeon places the implant either at the back of or in the front of the muscle in your chest (pectoral muscle). Implants that are put in the front of the muscle are held in together with the use of an exceptional tissue referred to as acellular dermal matrix. After a period of time, your body replaces this tissue with collagen.
Tissue expander is a procedure that stretches your remaining chest skin and smooth tissues to make room for the breast implant. Your surgeon puts a balloon like tissue expander underneath or over your pectoral muscle at the time of your mastectomy. Over the subsequent few months, by a small valve underneath your skin, your doctor makes use of a needle to inject saline into the valve, filling the balloon in stages.
This gradual technique allows the skin to stretch over time. You'll go to your doctor each and every week or two to have the saline injected. You can also feel some pain or strain as the implant expands.
After the tissue is effectively expanded, your doctor performs a second surgical operation to remove the tissue expander and exchange it with a permanent implant, which is positioned in the same area as the tissue expander.
Recovery from breast reconstruction
You might feel be worn-out and sore for quite a few weeks after surgery. Your doctor will prescribe medicine to assist manipulate your pain.
Your doctor will let you know of restrictions to your activities, such as staying away from overhead lifting or strenuous activities. Don't be amazed if it appears to take a lengthy time to bounce back from surgical procedure — it may also take as long as a year or two to feel absolutely healed.
Generally, you may follow up with your plastic surgeon on a yearly basis to check your reconstructed breast after the reconstruction is complete. Make an appointment quicker than that, however, if you have any worries about your reconstruction.
Results of breast reconstruction
Keep your expectations practical when watching for the result of your surgery. Breast reconstruction surgical procedure affords many benefits; however it might not make you appear or experience precisely like you did earlier than your mastectomy.
What breast reconstruction can do
Give you a breast contour
Provide increased symmetry to your breasts so that they appear the same under clothing or a bathing suit
Help you keep away from the need for a form (external prosthesis) inside your bra
What breast reconstruction may also do
Improve your self-esteem and body image
somehow takes away the physical reminders of your disease
Require extra surgical treatment to correct reconstructive problems
What breast reconstruction might not do
Make you look precisely the same as before
Give your reconstructed breast the same sensations as your normal breast
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