Breast reconstruction is a different kind of surgery than breast augmentation. While most women who choose to have breast augmentation do it purely for cosmetic reasons, breast reconstruction is a surgery for women who have lost one or both breasts due to mastectomy. The surgery is intended to restore the breast to as normal and natural an appearance as possible, generally through several plastic surgery techniques. In cases where only one breast requires reconstruction, augmentation or a lift may be recommended for the other breast in order to ensure symmetry.
Because breast reconstruction surgery is different from standard augmentation, there can be variables in results that are specific to this type of procedure. A reconstructed breast is unlikely to have the same feel as the original, natural breast. Also, there will always be visible scars or incision lines from reconstruction or mastectomy, including at the donor site. Note that donor sites are commonly located on less visible parts of the body, including the back and the abdomen.
There are many factors to consider if you are thinking about breast reconstruction. Your breast cancer treatment and diagnosis must be taken into consideration, as well as any accompanying medical conditions or treatments you are or will be receiving. Having the right outlook is key as well.
Here at the Plastic and Cosmetic Center of South Texas, our breast reconstruction experts will discuss your potential procedure in detail so that we can be sure you understand what your outcome and restoration will be. Restoring your breasts can have a significant positive effect on self-esteem and overall psychological health, but it’s important to know what you are getting into and what you can realistically expect from the very beginning.
Your reconstruction surgery is likely to involve several different procedures, which will be performed in multiple stages. It may be started at the same time as the mastectomy, or it may be postponed until you are fully healed from that procedure. Other reasons for postponement include other treatments or procedures you may require as you continue following the instructions of your oncologist and that schedule of treatment.
Preparing for your reconstruction involves more than just preoperative care. This is a kind of surgery that can have a serious psychological effect — most often a positive one — and because of that, your consultation with our surgeons will most likely require some very candid and personal conversation.
Knowing why you want the surgery and what you expect from it is as important as the standard medical and lifestyle questions that will be asked, such as any medications you are taking or any treatments you are still receiving or expect to receive. Our surgeons will go over everything with you so that we can help make sure breast reconstruction gets you what you want and that you have all the information you need to make a final decision. To make an appointment to discuss breast reconstruction with one of our experienced surgical professionals, call our office today.