The hardships of illness combined with a mastectomy are difficult enough for women to go through, so your options following a mastectomy should reflect your personal preferences and allow you to move forward in the most comfortable way possible. Here are three options for breast reconstruction after cancer.
1. Implant-Based Reconstruction
The most common method of breast reconstruction involves using implants. In implant-based reconstruction, an implant is used as a foundation for your new breast shape, matching your existing breast as closely as possible. You can choose either silicone or saline implants for your reconstruction with the help of your surgeon. Due to the minimal available tissue for coverage, gel implants are usually the best choice.
2. Tissue-Based Reconstruction
Sometimes, your own body tissue can be used to create a new breast. Fatty tissue, skin and sometimes muscle can be taken from your back, abdomen, buttocks or thighs to reconstruct a natural-looking breast. Although tissue-based reconstruction can create very nice results in the right candidate, the surgery is a complex one that requires a great deal of technical and often microsurgical skills.
3. No Reconstruction
Some women, on the other hand, choose not to have their breasts reconstructed. There are many reasons for this, and women should feel encouraged to make their own decision free of pressure from doctors, family or friends. Women who choose no reconstruction may still want to address other aesthetic issues, such as excess skin or scars.
Whatever your decision for your breasts following cancer, you should feel confident knowing that you are making the choice that is right for you, both physically and emotionally.
With over 25 years of active practice, Dr. Michael Halls is recognized as a leader in breast surgery procedures in Southern California. Dr. Halls graduated Alpha Omega Alpha and Cum Laude from Medical School in Canada and completed seven further years of training in Plastic Surgery Residencies and Fellowships including two years in Boston at Harvard and Massachusetts General Hospital.
He is Board Certified in Plastic Surgery in the United States (FACS) and Canada (FRCS(C)) and is an active member in international, national, and local societies for breast and plastic surgery. Dr. Halls has published multiple papers in journals and texts over the past four decades and has appeared on many local and national TV programs.