Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in women. The disease is found in 1 out of 8 women. The disease can be controlled through early diagnosis and advanced treatments and breast reconstruction is an important part of the treatment.
Breast reconstruction can be performed during or after breast cancer operation. This is determined by the patient’s overall health condition and the course of the disease. Breast reconstruction is an important treatment that provides physical and mental support to patients who lost all or some of their breast. It is very rewarding for quick adaptation of the patient to her former life and for her to feel well. The patient stays in the hospital from 2 to 5 days as necessary after a Breast Reconstruction operation and then discharged. The stitches put during the operation are removed in 7-10 days. A prosthetic breast implanted through a Breast Reconstruction operation can have a life span of up to 20 years. Breast prostheses are made of very strong and healthy material and never harm the patient even if deformed and do not prevent any breast cancer tests.
What is breast reconstruction?
Breast Reconstruction is the surgical reconstruction operations performed on patients whose breast were removed due to breast cancer. It is used as an attempt to eliminate any physical or mental traumas resulting from breast cancer. Breast reconstruction is very important to preserve balance, symmetry and aesthetics in the body.
If the conditions are suitable, Breast Reconstruction surgery can also be performed right after a mastectomy operation, enabling the patient to overcome the process easier.
Advanced technology allows patients to obtain a very natural breast structure after Breast Reconstruction surgeries.
Who is a good candidate for breast reconstruction surgery?
Most patients who have breast cancer surgery are suitable for Breast Reconstruction. Breast Reconstruction can be performed concurrently with breast cancer surgery. These surgeries are jointly planned by oncologists, general surgeons and plastic surgeons.
For some patients, Breast Reconstruction operation can be delayed for a while due to special cases or a health condition. Breast Reconstruction surgery is postponed if simultaneous operation with breast cancer surgery is not possible.
If the operation is to bse performed after the breast cancer surgery, the plastic surgeon and the oncologist will evaluate the patient’s condition. The evaluation will determine the most suitable time for the patient.
Also, the patient should discontinue any anticoagulants before the surgery. The patient should also discontinue smoking and alcohol.
How is breast reconstruction performed?
Doctors use various techniques for Breast Reconstruction. The operation is performed in consideration of the cancer stage as well as the patient’s metabolic and physiological condition. A detailed examination is followed by a determination of whether it will be performed simultaneously with the breast cancer surgery.
Expanding the breast skin is one of the most common Breast Reconstruction techniques. After the breast skin is expanded, the prosthesis is implanted in this area and the operation is thereby completed.
Breast skin expansion is performed by implanting a tissue expander under the breast skin and the pectoral muscles. After the operation, the specialist injects saline into the area through the tissue expander under the skin and expands the tissue expander. The area thus naturally expands over time.
After the breast tissue achieves sufficient expansion, the tissue expander is removed and the permanent breast prosthesis is implanted with a second operation. The nipple and the brown ring around the nipple are reconstructed later. This operation (nipple reconstruction) is usually performed through tattoos/permanent makeup technique.
In flap reconstruction, the breast is reconstructed with tissues taken from the body rather than implanting prosthesis. The tissues of the abdomen, back or hip are examined for suitable tissue and implanted into the area during the operation.
Flap reconstruction is more complex than breast prosthesis and operation scars are left in the areas both of tissue extraction and breast reconstruction. It also takes longer time to heal and more care is required as operations are performed in two areas. However, a more natural look is achieved because reconstruction is performed with the body’s own tissue.
Post-operative consideration in breast reconstruction
The patient is discharged 2 – 5 days after a Breast Reconstruction operation. A drain is attached to drain any accumulated liquid between the tissues and to prevent infection risk. The drains are removed in the examination performed 1-2 weeks later. The stitches are removed 7 – 10 days later.
The patient may return to her normal life within 4-6 weeks. The patient should also avoid heavy sports and sexual intercourse during this period. Patients who comply with the doctor’s recommendations recover easier and quicker.
Ne sensation is expected in the breast after the operation. Even if a sensation is felt over time, it will never reach the previous levels.
Surgical scars will fade out over time, which make take up to 1 to 1.5 years.
Does breast reconstruction surgery have any risks?
Breast Reconstruction surgery has certain risks just as other surgical operations. These risks include edema, hemorrhage and anesthetic problems. However, these risks are controllable and occur very rarely.
The prosthesis is removed if cases such as infection occur after the prosthetic operation. It may be re-implanted after a few months of observing the patient’s condition.
Capsule contracture is the most common problem in Breast Reconstruction. It refers to the hard feeling on the breast resulting from the injured tissue around the prosthesis contracting it. Capsule contracture is a treatable condition.
Who should not have Breast Reconstruction?
Breast Reconstruction surgery is not performed in the following cases:
- Patients who received radiotherapy to the breast wall.
- Patients with the potential to receive radiotherapy following breast cancer surgery.
If patients who had Breast Reconstruction operation are later required to have radiotherapy, the prosthesis should contain no metal pieces. If a prosthesis with metal pieces was implanted, the surrounding tissue is affected at a higher rate during radiotherapy, which may damage the tissue.
After radiotherapy, delayed reconstruction methods can also be used during late period in various techniques depending on the patient.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where is breast prosthesis implanted?
Implanting the prosthesis under the pectoral muscles or the mammary glands is one of the most common methods in breast prosthesis surgeries. The doctor will decide how to perform the transaction depending on the examination and the test results.
Round prosthesis? Or teardrop (anatomic) prosthesis?
The shape of the breast prosthesis is one of the most frequently asked questions. This will be decided in consideration of the patient’s body type and the condition of the tissue on which the operation is to be performed. Both prostheses offer very natural and satisfactory results. Round prostheses provide a more attractive look in low-cut dresses.
Does breast reconstruction leave any scars?
Some scars are left after any surgical operation including breast reconstruction operations. The amount of surgical scar depends on the skin structure and the recovery process. An operation performed by a plastic surgeon highly experienced in breast reconstruction will leave less scars.
Are breast prostheses permanent?
The prostheses implanted after breast reconstruction have a life span of 15 to 20 years. Then the prosthesis has to be replaced. The life span of the prosthesis is determined by the patient’s habits and body structure.
Deformations in the breast and weight gains-losses have a negative impact on the prosthesis. The prosthesis is renewed through the incision of the first operation.
Do breast prostheses burst?
Contrary to popular belief, breast prostheses are very durable. Applying pressure or lying on them, putting on a seat belt or a backpack will not cause any bursts. However, impact by a sharp object may cause a burst.
Will the patient get hurt if the breast prosthesis is burst? This is one of the most frequently asked questions. Prostheses containing 4th and 5th generation FDA-approved gels will not harm the patient if burst. This is because they are manufactured as suitable for the human body. Likewise, a burst will not cause any spread in the body or leakage and it also does not lead to cancer.
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“Post-mastectomy silicon prices”, “breast reconstruction price”, “breast reconstruction Ankara”, “breast reconstruction price Ankara” and “breast reconstruction price Ankara 2022” are among the most frequently asked questions by patients planning such an operation. The operation cost has many factors. These factors include the overall condition of the patient, the type and nature of the operation, the hospital of the operation, the know-how, skills and experience of the plastic surgeon. Your doctor can provide the most accurate information about the price of breast reconstruction operations during your examination. Please feel free to contact us at (0536) 511 40 51 or email@example.com for detailed information about the prices and the operations.