Instead of using autologous tissue to reconstruct their breasts right after a mastectomy, some women may be candidates for direct-to-implant breast reconstructive surgery, or a “one-step” reconstruction.
Our plastic and reconstructive surgeons offer direct-to-implant reconstruction for patients having a nipple, areola, and/or skin sparing mastectomies, who do not wish to increase their breast size, are nonsmokers, and who will not require radiation therapy after the procedure. During a private consultation at our office at Southwest Breast & Aesthetics, we will discuss all of the options available to you even if you are recently diagnosed and just starting to plan out your treatment.
In the majority of women undergoing this procedure, a two-step reconstructive procedure is performed. However, in selected patients, this procedure can be performed in a single operation at the time of the mastectomy.
An implant is used to reconstruct the breast with the support of a regenerative tissue matrix. Even though there have been great improvements to silicone implants, capsular contracture and implant migration remain a real risk after implant reconstruction, and this may necessitate revision surgeries in the future.
The silicone implant can be positioned on top of the pectoral muscle, or behind it. When the implant is placed behind the muscle, the muscle has to be cut and lifted during the procedure. A pocket for the implant is created between the muscle and the implant. With this type of placement, the recovery can be painful, and consequently have a slightly longer recovery time. It is important to note that with placement of the implant on top of the muscle, there must be enough tissue in the upper section of the breast so the implant edge is not as visible. However, if the patient has enough tissue, this is not an issue. It also allows for a less painful, faster recovery, and decreases the risk of movement and distortion of the implant.
Incision type and location will be decided with your surgeon to achieve optimal cancer operation as well as reconstruction.
Most of our direct-to-implant breast reconstruction patients experience a dull ache for a couple of days following the breast surgery procedure (particularly if the implant has been placed underneath the muscle). Pain relievers are prescribed, if necessary. You will be required to wear a supportive bra day and night. The recovery time for breast surgery is around 4 - 6 weeks with some clients experiencing tenderness for up to 4 weeks or more. Strenuous activity should be avoided for a 6-week period with follow-up treatments to check the results of the procedure once any swelling has subsided.
Your plastic surgeon will discuss any specific risks or complications of breast surgery prior to the procedure. General risks with breast surgery are quite low due to the regularity with which the procedure is performed, but patients must be made aware of minor bruising following the surgery along with associated swelling and tenderness.
Wound breakdown and infection can be a problem if aftercare and follow up treatments are not adhered to correctly, which could cause abnormal scarring to the area. Specific, but uncommon problems caused by the breast reconstruction can include: a collection of fluid around the implant, wrinkles or ripples in the skin, changes in sensation in the breast and nipple area, and contraction of the capsule where the implant is placed. Any concerns or continuing discomfort following breast surgery should be addressed with your plastic surgeon or doctor as soon as possible.
|Recovery Time||3 – 4 Weeks|
|Average Procedure Time||1 – 2 Hours|
|Post-op Follow-up||1 Week|
|Procedure Recovery Location||In-Patient|
When faced with having a mastectomy, many women inquire about direct-to-implant breast reconstruction with a plastic surgeon as soon as the find out they need this aggressive type of treatment. When possible, the mastectomy can be scheduled at the same time as the implant placement. If you would like to find out if you qualify for this type of breast reconstruction, call today for a consultation.
Your journey to better begins with a consultation at Southwest Breast and Aesthetics. Our plastic surgeons set the standards for plastic surgery through their innovative procedures and meticulous attention to detail. Discover a better experience by booking your consultation at Southwest Breast and Aesthetics today.