Almost 55,000 women around the world get affected by breast cancer every year. Only half of these women who get a surgery done for breast cancer undergo a mastectomy, the removal of the whole breast. After the removal happens, there are certain methods available for the reconstruction of the breast. The two most common types of breast reconstruction today are breast implants and autologous surgery. Most of us are still unaware of the facts about breast reconstruction, and it is important for us to know all about it.
Breast Implant Surgery
Breast implant surgery involves the insertion of a semi-permanent implant, which is known as expander implant. This implantation is done underneath the chest muscle. After the insertion, it is expanded so that a pocket gets created. During the second operation, this implant is changed to a permanent one. This implant can also be created with a sheet of collagen to work as permanent
In the autologous surgery, the tissue for the reconstruction of the breast is taken from another part of the body, such as the thigh, back, or stomach to rebuild and shape the breast. In this type of surgery, the tissue for breast reconstruction is often taken from the abdomen.
When Can A Reconstruction Be Done?
The most common question that comes to people’s minds is, “How soon can a reconstruction be done after mastectomy?”. Most of the breast cancer patients can get an immediate reconstruction done after surgery. However, those patients who need to undergo radiotherapy are
How Many Operations?
Except expander implant surgery, other breast reconstruction surgeries are just one operation. In expander implant surgery, it is done in two stages as a period of few months is required for the expansion to happen. However, many plastic surgeons suggest an additional surgery to reduce or enhance the other breast so that both look symmetrical. The plastic surgery of the healthy breast requires a few more visits to get the best cosmetic result.
The ‘Feel’ Of The New Breast
It is an unfortunate fact that although breast reconstruction rebuilds the shape of the breasts, it does not restore the same sensation. However,
Common Side Effects
Like most surgeries, breast reconstruction too has many side effects. There is pain, itchiness, inflammation, bruising and swelling, but certain painkillers, anti-inflammatory medicine, and other medicines help the new breast and the scars heal. A period of six months can easily cure the side effects and help you appreciate your new breast.
Complicated side effects like fluid buildup or an infection around the wound sites normally get re-absorbed naturally with time. However, larger amounts of these may need to be drawn off with a syringe by a breast care nurse or a surgeon. Infections in implant surgeries need to be treated with antibiotics, and in some cases, the implant needs to be taken out and redone after a period of three months.
The Healing Process