If you plan to have a mastectomy and pursue reconstruction using breast implants, as opposed to having tissue flap surgery TRAM , DIEP , latissimus dorsi , you'll have three main options to choose from. The U. Food and Drug Administration FDA has approved saline, silicone, and highly cohesive silicone gel "gummy bear" breast implants for this use. While these implants have similarities, you'll need to weigh the differences to decide which is right for you. Breast implants are silicone sacs that are filled with either sterile salt water saline or silicone gel.
Breast Reconstruction Using Implants
Breast Implants for Reconstruction After Mastectomy
After a mastectomy , some women choose to have cosmetic surgery to remake their breast. This type of surgery is called breast reconstruction. It can be performed at the same time as mastectomy immediate reconstruction or later delayed reconstruction. The breast is usually reshaped in two stages, or surgeries. During the first stage, a tissue expander is used. An implant is placed during the second stage. Sometimes, the implant is inserted in the first stage.
What to Expect After Breast Reconstruction Surgery
Many women who have a mastectomy—surgery to remove an entire breast to treat or prevent breast cancer—have the option of having the shape of the removed breast rebuilt. Women who choose to have their breasts rebuilt have several options for how it can be done. Breasts can be rebuilt using implants saline or silicone.
Breast conservation has been associated with poor cosmetic outcome when used to treat breast cancer in patients who have undergone prior augmentation mammaplasty. Radiation therapy of the augmented breast can increase breast fibrosis and capsular contraction. Skin-sparing mastectomy and immediate reconstruction are examined as an alternative treatment. Six patients with prior breast augmentation were treated for breast cancer by skin-sparing mastectomy and immediate reconstruction.