This week, James E. Craigie, MD, of The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction answers your question.
Question: I had a left mastectomy in 2010 and was thinking about different options for breast reconstruction! I want something that I get done one time and don’t have to keep coming back for different procedures.
Answer: Thanks for your great question. Breast reconstruction can be performed using different techniques. Each approach has its advantages and disadvantages. Also each person’s situation is different and factors related to whether the reconstruction is started at the time of mastectomy or later may play a part in determining what technique is best for each person.
Unfortunately, there is no one option that can routinely be performed in only one surgery. In general, breast reconstruction with your own natural tissue (fatty tissue and skin) gives results that when complete are more likely permanent and as time goes by tend to get more natural and don’t deteriorate. Reconstruction with implants may require less time to recover but as time goes by the results tend to deteriorate and more often require revisions from year to year. Unfortunately, both approaches may require (almost always) more than one step. If you have had radiation, then using your own tissue is usually the best option. Therefore if you are looking for a permanent result that does not need to be redone later, then using your own tissue without sacrificing important muscles may be a good option for you. Let me know if you have more questions.
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