Breast cancer is the second most common cancer in the United States after skin cancer. It is estimated that as many as one in eight women will experience invasive breast cancer at some point in their life.
Partial or full breast removal (lumpectomy or mastectomy) is just one of the treatment options for women who are suffering from breast cancer. A full mastectomy is also an elective procedure for some women, who are at significantly increased risk of developing breast cancer and choose it as a preventative measure.
For many women, their breasts are a significant part of their identity. Breasts are considered a mark of femininity, help to balance out a woman’s curves and give them the freedom to wear particular styles of clothes. They can also enhance a woman’s confidence.
Breast reconstruction can restore the shape and confidence of a breast cancer survivor, or those who have undergone trauma to the breast area. Dr. Malcolm Lesavoy is a board-certified plastic surgeon with the knowledge, skill, and experience to deliver breast reconstruction surgery to patients in Beverly Hills and the surrounding area.
Types of breast reconstruction
There are two types of breast reconstruction possible, and each can be performed on one or both breasts, depending on what you require. Dr. Lesavoy will be able to help you decide which treatment is right for you at your consultation appointment.
Implant reconstruction involves placing silicone or saline implants under the skin. Silicone implants are pre-filled and available in a range of sizes, while saline implants are inserted empty and then filled to the desired size.
Flap reconstruction uses tissue from another part of your body to construct your new breasts. The tissue usually comes from areas where there is excess fat such as the buttocks, stomach or thighs. Flap reconstruction is usually considered to be more complicated of a technique, and carries a higher grade of scarring than implant reconstruction.
Can I have just one breast reconstructed?
If you only have cancer in one breast, then you may have chosen to have a single mastectomy, which only removes the affected breast. Single breast reconstruction is extremely common.
Dr. Lesavoy has the skill and experience to be able to reconstruct your new breast, so it looks and feels symmetrical to your natural one.
Will I need a nipple reconstruction?
Nipple reconstruction takes place in a separate surgery that usually occurs a few months after your breasts have been reconstructed.
This gives them time to heal into their new, permanent shape, so you can be sure that the nipple placement looks natural. Nipple reconstructions are usually performed by manipulating a small part of the skin on your newly reconstructed breast.
Unfortunately, a mastectomy severs the nerves that provide sensation to the breasts. This means that your reconstructed breast and nipples will not have any feeling. However, they will look and feel completely natural.
How soon after my mastectomy can I have my reconstruction surgery?
Many women are understandably devastated by the loss of their breasts and want to undergo reconstructive surgery as soon as possible.
While it is possible to have reconstructive surgery at the same time as a mastectomy, you might be advices to wait until your treatment program is complete, if you require additional cancer treatment such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy.
Dr. Lesavoy will always strongly recommend that you take the advice of your oncologist before deciding to have your breast reconstruction surgery.
If you have had, or are schedule for, a lumpectomy or mastectomy, you don’t have to live without your curves forever. A breast reconstruction can restore your shape and help you feel feminine, sexy, and like yourself again. Want to learn more about the benefits of breast reconstruction with Dr. Lesavoy? Schedule a consultation today at 888-537-2869.