EVOLV Medical Aesthetics

Breast Reconstruction

Because breast reconstruction is so personal and can be a highly emotional decision, our plastic surgeons perform a detailed evaluation and discuss all options available to each patient, so they can make an informed and educated choice. They will recommend an individualized treatment plan that ensures each patient has realistic goals and expectations for their breast reconstruction surgery.

Dr. Frank Barone is a highly experienced plastic surgeon who specializes in breast reconstructions, including several options for patients in specific cases. Each reconstruction is highly personalized and our team will be there to assist you every step of your procedure process and after.

New Options for Breast Reconstruction

New types of treatment combined with improvements in reconstructive surgery provide women who have breast cancer today with better choices. If patients are considering having reconstructive surgery, our plastic surgeons suggest the patient meets for a consultation before their mastectomy. This allows our surgical team to plan the best treatment for each patient, even if they choose a delayed breast reconstruction rather than immediately following mastectomy.

Dr. Barone had an opportunity to speak with 13 ABC news about the new approach to Breast Reconstruction. This new approach uses a women’s own tissue.

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Breast Reconstruction Candidates

Patients can benefit from a breast reconstruction surgery immediately following a mastectomy, or later on. The specific type of breast reconstruction procedure can vary and depends on the woman’s age, body type, and cancer treatment. The majority of women having undergone a mastectomy can also undergo breast reconstruction. Women who undergo a lumpectomy rather than a mastectomy may not necessarily need breast reconstruction. A surgical plan will be determined by Dr. Barone and your treatment team.

Patients who choose breast reconstruction do so for many reasons:

  • To permanently regain their breast shape.
  • To obtain a balanced look when they are wearing a bra or swimsuit.
  • To avoid the need for an external prosthesis (a breast form worn inside the bra).
  • To assist with improved body image and self-esteem following mastectomy.


What to Know about Breast Reconstruction

Breast reconstruction is a highly customizable procedure, requiring an open dialogue between patient and surgeon. To better prepare for a breast reconstruction procedure, patients should have a list of questions in mind or written down to bring to their initial consultation with their surgeon. Questions should be personalized but might include:

  • What is your experience with breast reconstruction?
  • What type of breast reconstruction do you recommend for me?
  • How will my breast be reconstructed?
  • What can I expect during recovery from breast reconstruction?


Preparing for Breast Reconstruction

Types of Breast Reconstruction

One-stage immediate breast reconstruction is done, or at least started, immediately after the general surgeon removes the breast tissue. The advantages to this are the chest tissues are not damaged by radiation therapy or scarring, often with a final result that looks better, and of course, there is less surgery. Following the first surgery, there may still be a number of steps needed to complete the immediate reconstruction process. Dr. Frank Barone will discuss with each patient the entire process of immediate breast reconstruction.

Two-stage delayed breast reconstruction means the reconstructive surgery is started later and is usually performed if using breast implants rather than a patient’s own tissue for reconstruction. This may be a better choice for some women who require radiation to the breast area following mastectomy.

Procedure Steps

Breast reconstruction surgery will be performed under anesthesia or sedation. The appropriate technique will then be used to reconstruct the breast. This might include:

  • TRAM flap technique: muscle, fat, and skin are taken from a donor site such as the abdomen and is then used to reconstruct the breast mound.
  • DIEP flap technique: uses only skin and fat from the donor site to reconstruct the breast mound.
  • Tissue expansion: over the course of several months, an expander is gradually filled with saline beneath the breast skin to create space for an implant. The implant can then be placed to reconstruct the breast.

After the breast mound has been reconstructed using the right technique for the patient, the nipple and areola can also be recreated. For those who were not candidates for nipple-sparing surgery during their mastectomy, the nipple can be recreated with three-dimensional tattooing. The natural-looking results complete the breast reconstruction process.


Breast Reconstruction Results

Recovery from a breast reconstruction will vary from patient to patient depending on the technique used. Patients will be provided with the necessary post-op instruction to ensure proper healing for successful results.

Once the healing process incomplete, patients can enjoy the results of their breast reconstruction. A breast reconstruction often relieves some of the emotional distress of a mastectomy and creates a feeling of wholeness in the patient. The reconstructed breast will look virtually identical to the real breast, giving natural-looking results that are long-lasting.


Breast Reconstruction Cost

The cost of a breast reconstruction procedure can vary depending on the technique being used, the implants (if used) and what type of reconstruction was decided. Patients will be given a quote of how much their breast reconstruction will be after an evaluation. Because the procedure is reconstructive, it is often covered by insurance.


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