This week, Dr. James Craigie of The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction answers your question.
Question: I’m 42 years old, and I have a surgery this month for breast reconstruction. Due to my genetic history, a plastic surgeon will be performing a double mastectomy. I want to know what my options are for post-op reconstruction? Thanks.
Answer: Hi — Thanks for the information about your planned surgery. If you have requested using your own tissue and were told that was not a good option for you, then you certainly can get a second opinion. You stated that your mastectomies were for preventive reasons, which gives you the time to consider all possibilities. Before having surgery you should feel good about your decision and be confident you know all your options. You have excellent surgeons and I know you will do well.
One advantage of using an implant is that you don’t require an incision anywhere else on your body in order to donate the tissue to make the new breasts. Using your own tissue requires a longer recovery and more healing. The donor area ends up healing with a scar. If you don’t need a tummy tuck or have “excess” tissue in your thighs or buttocks then you may not want a scar in these areas. You should also know that it is not necessary to sacrifice any of your muscles in order to use your own tissue. Finally, it is important to know that if you have implant reconstruction and it does not work out you can still use your own tissue later–even years later! Most likely it will work out and you will have an excellent result and speedy recovery. I hope this has helped. Let us know if you have more unanswered questions. If you would like a second opinion, you could set up an appointment in our office, or we could also consult over the phone if you cannot make the trip to Charleston.
Dr. James Craigie
Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction
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