Breast reconstruction surgery is performed on thousands of women each year who have lost one or both of their breasts to breast cancer or traumatic injuries.
Surviving breast cancer is a heroic and courageous achievement. When a lumpectomy or mastectomy has been recommended, a plastic surgeon can play a key role in guiding you through reconstructive options, performing the necessary procedures and caring for you postoperatively.
Breast reconstruction after a breast cancer diagnosis is fully or partially covered by most insurance companies. The Women's Health and Cancer Rights Act (WHCRA) of 1998 includes requirements that insurance companies cover all or part of the cost of reconstruction of the breast following a mastectomy. It also provides for reasonable correction of breast asymmetry. Before performing breast reconstructive surgery, we can work with your insurance company in an effort to obtain financial approval for the procedure.
Breast reconstruction may include a breast implant, the use of your own tissue (flaps), or a combination of both. The type and timing of breast reconstruction should factor in other potential treatments (such as chemotherapy and radiation) as well as your body shape, life activities, other medical conditions and personal preferences.
Talk to your surgeon about when breast reconstruction might work for you. Immediate, or primary, reconstruction may allow for preservation of chest skin and may help reduce some psychological anxiety associated with a mastectomy. Delayed, or secondary, reconstruction is available to women who would like to wait and for women whose treatment prevents immediate reconstruction.
Many of our surgeons offer a free consultation visit.
Call today to schedule your consultation.
- autologous breast reconstruction
Autologous, or "own-tissue", reconstruction transfers tissue from one area of the body to the site of the mastectomy to recreate a breast mound that appears as anatomically and aesthetically normal as possible.
- diep flap breast reconstruction
DIEP flap reconstruction restores the breast using skin and fatty tissue from the lower abdomen below the level of the belly button, along with blood vessels from under the abdominal muscles, which effectively results in a "tummy tuck" as well.
- fat transfer breast reconstruction
Fat Transfer, or fat grafting, removes fat from one area of the body and grafts it to the site of the mastectomy to recreate a breast mound. Using a patient's own tissue means there is no risk of the fat graft being rejected by the body.
- implant-based breast reconstruction
Implant-based breast reconstruction is a common option among mastectomy patients. Benefits may include a shorter operative time, a shorter hospitalization (if any at all), no additional surgery from a donor site, and faster initial recovery.
- other breast reconstruction flaps
There are three additional "flap" options for breast reconstruction; SIEA (superficial inferior epigastric artery) Flap, S-Gap (superficial gluteal artery perforator) Flap, and Latissimus Dorsi Musculocutaneous Flap. Each of these options uses a flap of tissue from a different part of the body.
- tram flap breast reconstruction
The TRAM, or transverse rectus abdominis musculocutaneous, flap uses the tissues of the abdomen below the belly button, including part of the stomach muscle.