Category: Breast Reconstruction
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Mastectomy is a word that you hope you never have to hear. Unfortunately, it is a reality that far too many women face. A breast cancer diagnosis and subsequent mastectomy affect a woman’s physical and emotional well-being. And while cancer treatments and surgery can help with the physical aspects, many women are left with the emotional trauma of having to see themselves without their breasts. Breast reconstruction is performed so that no woman has to deal with this reality. Breast reconstruction uses the flap method, where tissue is taken from another part of your body and molded to create a new breast, or tissue expanders and implants, which is very similar to breast augmentation. The doctor will discuss the pros and cons of each option at the time of your consultation.
Just as there are two options for reconstruction techniques, there are also two different timeframes for your reconstruction: delayed or immediate. Delayed breast reconstruction occurs sometime after your mastectomy. Immediate reconstruction is performed at the same time as your mastectomy. Although there are benefits to both timeframes, many women are interested in immediate reconstruction because, with this option, they do not have to see themselves without their breasts for an extended period. If you have recently discovered that a mastectomy is in your future and you are interested in immediate reconstruction, some prerequisites must be met.
What Are the Benefits of Immediate Reconstruction?
Immediate reconstruction offers many benefits. Not only does it limit the emotional insecurities of losing your breasts, but it also allows for a better aesthetic appearance. When reconstruction is performed after your mastectomy has healed and scarring has occurred, it can be more challenging to achieve the same level of cosmetic results. Also, immediate reconstruction removes the need for an additional day of surgery and anesthesia. Combining the two procedures allows you to reduce your overall recovery period and is often more cost-effective because you are already in surgery and under anesthesia.
What Are the Benefits of Delayed Reconstruction?
While many women find immediate reconstruction to be more advantageous, delayed reconstruction is not without its benefits. Delayed reconstruction is performed months or years after the initial surgery. This delay will allow you plenty of time to heal, recover, and improve your physical and emotional health before choosing the type of reconstruction you want. The main benefit of delayed reconstruction is, however, that it does not interfere with post-mastectomy cancer treatments such as chemotherapy or radiation. For women who have their surgery before radiation treatment, delayed reconstruction is often preferable, as radiation can affect your results and healing.
Are You A Candidate?
The only way to know if you are a candidate for immediate reconstruction is to talk with your oncologist, your mastectomy surgeon, and your plastic surgeon to make sure that everyone is on the same page. Additional cancer treatments, the stage your cancer is in, your current medical condition, and your lifestyle will all factor into which time frame is best for you.
Advancements in plastic surgery have led to the development of new breast implants that can offer women even better results from breast surgeries. Each newly developed product must be approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) so that patients can be assured of its safety for use. Natrelle INSPIRA® Cohesive breast implants have recently been approved by the FDA and are now being offered as an excellent option for breast implants here at Spring Ridge Plastic Surgery.
Natrelle INSPIRA® Cohesive Breast Implants
The new Natrelle INSPIRA® Cohesive breast implants are designed for a soft feel with the fullest roundness. Natrelle INSPIRA® Cohesive implants are filled with cohesive silicone gel and are available in multiple sizes and projections so that women can personalize their look. Due to their high gel-fill ratio and highly cohesive gel, Natrelle INSPIRA® Cohesive implants offer improved fullness and roundness to provide patients with more customizable options. These implants are also more likely to maintain their shape long-term and may reduce the risk of implant irregularities and rippling. The cohesive gel in Natrelle INSPIRA® Cohesive breast implants helps the implants resist tissue compression and minimizes distortion and gel migration in the unlikely event of implant rupture.
Now Available at Spring Ridge Plastic Surgery
Dr. Schlechter is now offering Natrelle INSPIRA® Cohesive implants to provide his breast augmentation, breast revision, and breast reconstruction patients with more options that can help them achieve the best possible results. Patients who are most likely to benefit from these new implants are those who desire a fuller and rounder look, patients with thin breast tissue who are at a higher risk of rippling, patients who need lower breast pole expansion, and patients who are undergoing breast reconstruction with implants. With Natrelle INSPIRA® Cohesive breast implants now approved by the FDA, many more women will be able to experience even better results and achieve their aesthetic goals with breast surgery.
To learn more about the newly approved Natrelle INSPIRA® Cohesive breast implants or other breast implant options available at Spring Ridge Plastic Surgery, schedule your personal consultation with our board-certified plastic surgeon, Benjamin Schlechter, MD, FACS. Please call us at (610) 678-9200 or complete our online contact form to request your consultation today.
Breast Reconstruction After Breast Cancer
October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, which was organized to raise funds for research and raise awareness of this disease. While just about everyone knows that breast cancer exists, not as many people know the repercussions of breast cancer and steps that may help to prevent it.
Breast Cancer: Did you know?
- One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime
- Breast cancer is the second leading cause of death in women
- Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women worldwide
- Death rates from breast cancer have been declining since about 1990, partly due to better screening and early detection, increased awareness, and improved treatment options.
While the above facts are becoming more widely known, many women are unaware of the options available to them after their cancer has been treated with a mastectomy. Breast Reconstruction Awareness (BRA) Day was created to “close the loop on breast cancer” by informing women of their options for reconstructive breast surgery. BRA Day occurs annually on the third Wednesday of October (October 15th this year).
Breast Reconstruction: Did you know?
- Since being enacted in 1998, the Women’s Health and Cancer Rights Act (WHCRA) requires any health plan or insurance company that offers coverage for breast cancer to also provide coverage for breast reconstruction and other post-mastectomy benefits.
- Eighty-nine percent of women want to see what breast reconstruction surgery results will look like before beginning cancer treatment.
- Less than 23 percent of women know the wide range of breast reconstruction options available.
- Only 22 percent of women are familiar with the quality of outcomes that can be expected.
- Only 19 percent of women understand that the timing of their treatment and the timing of their breast reconstruction greatly impacts their options and results.
After mastectomy, many women may feel an overwhelming sense of victory once their cancer has been treated, but many of them also miss what was once such a central part of their femininity. Breast reconstruction can restore a natural-looking breast appearance so that the battle with breast cancer does not have to end with something missing. At Spring Ridge Plastic Surgery, we have seen how rewarding breast reconstruction can be for women who want to look and feel whole again.
To learn more about your options with breast reconstruction surgery, please schedule a complimentary consultation at Spring Ridge Plastic Surgery by calling (610) 678-9200. For your convenience, you may also fill out our online contact form.