“After my initial surgery, my breast reconstruction is done and can’t be improved.”
Natural breast reconstruction is not finished after just one surgery. Additional procedures are needed to improve the appearance of the new breasts.
The purpose of the first-stage surgery is to rebuild the breasts by moving skin and fat from another part of the body to mastectomy site. This can be done by transferring tissue from areas like the lower abdomen (DIEP), the buttocks (GAP), or the upper thighs (PAP).
The surgeons use microsurgical techniques to remove blood vessels from the donor site and reconnect them to blood vessels in the chest area. For some women, it’s also possible to restore sensation in this area by reconnecting the nerves that were severed during mastectomy.
After the initial reconstruction, a patient normally has at least one revision surgeries to reshape the breast flaps and correct any cosmetic irregularities. Second-stage and third-stage procedures may require using many surgical techniques to achieve the desired results.
Breast revision surgery involves adjusting the flap of skin and tissue covering the breast, as well as removing any excess skin, tissue, or fat. In some cases, fat grafting may also be performed, which involves injecting fat from another part of the body into the area. These methods are used to improve the shape and symmetry of the breasts.
These procedures can also include revision of the donor site incision to fix scarring issues. The surgeon may remove an irregular scar or excess skin and close the resulting defect.
If a woman had a unilateral breast reconstruction procedure, surgery can also be performed to revise the natural breast. A mastopexy (breast lift), breast reduction, or breast augmentation can be done to improve symmetry with the reconstructed breast.
Women whose nipples were removed during mastectomy can often have nipple reconstruction. This is done by using breast skin to recreate the projection of a natural nipple. These patients can also have tattooing done to recreate the appearance of their absent nipple. 3-D nipple tattooing creates a highly detailed tattoo of the nipple/areola; the tattoo artist uses custom coloring, shading and detail work to give a natural, dimensional appearance.
At the Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction, we want you to know all of your breast reconstruction options. We’re here to debunk these breast reconstruction myths and give you all of the information you need to make smart, informed decisions. To learn more, you can email us at email@example.com or talk with us via chat on our website.