Breast Reconstruction

Undergoing a mastectomy can have a huge impact on a patient’s mental health. Some women wonder whether they will ever be loved or desired again. They have trouble seeing themselves as beautiful. They feel like they’ve lost something vital to who they are, and they worry about what the rest of the world will think. There’s hopelessness, a loss of self-worth, anger, and despair, all coupled with the crippling wave of emotions that come along with breast cancer. But there’s no need to feel this way. Breast reconstruction provides cancer patients with comfort and a renewed confidence in themselves. It’s a way to take back your life and move on.

Yes Doctor’s Plastic Surgery Procedure Breast Reconstruction

What is Breast Reconstruction?

Breast reconstruction is a cosmetic surgical procedure designed to restore the form and shape of all or part of the breasts, typically after a mastectomy, also known as a breast removal. Breast reconstruction can be performed on one or both breasts, depending on the type of mastectomy received. It may also include a separate procedure used to reconstruct the areola and nipple area. The choice to undergo a mastectomy is a personal one, and it can often be a huge source of emotion. Some women feel like they need something other than basic padding to complete their aesthetic; others receive the procedure because they don’t want to feel like they have lost a part of their bodies. Whatever the reason, the angst surrounding mastectomies is often used to illustrate why the field of cosmetic surgery exists. Women who receive mastectomies have higher suicide rates and rates of relapse. They also have a hard time functioning in daily life. Breast reconstruction has been shown to alleviate many of these symptoms. It doesn’t aid in curing a patient’s cancer, but it is essential to their recovery. There’s no reason to be ashamed about undergoing breast reconstruction. It’s not a sign of vanity. It is a vital procedure, and it has an enormous impact on a patient’s quality of life.

Breast reconstruction can be performed as part of a cancer treatment plan, or it can be the final step of a preventative measure. Some patients receive what is known as a prophylactic mastectomy, meant to remove the breasts when a patient is at high risk of developing cancerous growths, even before they receive a diagnosis. The procedure is considered an artform. It can be difficult for inexperienced surgeons to properly mimic the size and shape of a patient’s original breasts. They may hang differently. The areola and nipple could appear artificial. Everything is dependent on minute details, which is why many doctors spend half a lifetime perfecting their technique. The main goal is to ensure that the breasts appear natural and that there is no visible sign that a procedure was performed. There are several ways to accomplish this. Some surgeons prefer to use implants while others use autologous tissue taken from other parts of the body. Newer techniques that preserve the skin have been proven to be quite helpful in ensuring the proper aesthetic. Mastectomies can be unilateral or bilateral, meaning one or both breasts can be removed. In the case of unilateral mastectomies, the surgeon may alter the healthy breast to make sure both are symmetrical. 

Types of Breast Reconstruction

  • Which Breast Reconstruction is Right for You?

    Like many forms of cosmetic surgery, breast reconstruction is often tailored to fit the patient’s unique condition and their aesthetic goals. This will depend on the type of cancer treatment the patient has received, their physique, how much tissue was salvaged, and their desired cup size. Some surgeons have a personal preference with regards to the chosen methodology; some have even patented their own. The field of breast reconstruction is a huge source of interest in the world of aesthetics, and there’s a growing demand for the procedure. It’s constantly being altered or approved upon. All of this means that patients have choices–a lot of them, and with choice comes the burden of research. Breast reconstruction is a major surgery. It’s not something that should be rushed into, especially considering its association with cancer treatment. Patients need to know what the procedure entails. They should understand all of their alternatives, and they should spend some time interviewing their provider to ensure that they are receiving the best treatment possible. Look over some of the different types of breast reconstruction below, and keep in mind that this is just a jumping off point. It would be impossible to fully list the range of options patients can choose from.

  • Implant Breast Reconstruction

    Implant breast reconstruction involves using a silicon gel or saline implant in place of fleshy mass. It’s not as complex as body tissue reconstruction, which is always a plus. It also tends to result in less scarring and fewer complications. But the end result won’t pass as real. The breasts will be cold and firm, and if one breast is left intact then asymmetry could be a problem. Implants aren’t always permanent. At some point in time, patients may need to have them replaced. This will require a second operation. There are several different types of implant reconstruction surgeries. Patients should take the time to learn the advantages and disadvantages of each one.  

  • Body Tissue Reconstruction

    In body tissue reconstruction, skin, tissue, fat, and muscle are taken from a donor site in another part of the body and used to reconstruct the breasts. This material is known as a flap, and it can come from any number of places, including the back, abdomen, inner thigh, and buttocks. The techniques used to reconstruct the breast in this manner are diverse, complex, and difficult to understand. But patients should still take the time to research them. Choosing the proper method could mean the difference between success and failure, so stay informed; learn about different donor sites, and always keep your medical condition in mind. 

  • Immediate Reconstruction

    Immediate reconstruction is performed at the same time as a mastectomy. It is the most common technique. It can be performed using autologous tissue, leftover tissue from the mastectomy, an implant, or a mixture, based on what’s available. This surgery is more complex. It takes more time. It also has a longer recovery period, and it is only suitable for patients who are in good health. Patients who are undergoing radiation therapy or plan to do so in the future should not have an immediate breast reconstruction. The same can be said for patients with comorbid health issues, including diabetes and active infections.

  • Delayed Reconstruction

    Delayed reconstructions are performed after a mastectomy. Patients have many of the same choices when it comes to the type of mass used. Autologous tissue, implants, and leftover breast material are common. Many patients choose this option to give themselves a period of rest after their cancer treatment. It can be hard to make a decision right away, and some prefer to weigh their options first. It’s optimal for those who have undergone or plan to undergo radiation therapy. It does leave a noticeable scar on the chest wall, which can be seen as a sign that a cosmetic operation was performed. The results are sometimes awkward or unnatural, and it can be harder to create realistic breasts. 

Why Breast Reconstruction Procedure?

It might not feel like it during the anguish of treatment and the emotional pain of facing a positive diagnosis, but there is life after breast cancer. There’s hope. There is excitement, sunny days, laughter, and smiles. It’s OK to lose sight of that sometimes, but try to bring yourself back. Try to think about what’s to come. There’s power in optimism. It’s been proven to aid patients in their fight and ensure a speedy recovery. That is because the mind and body are connected. In fact, they’re one and the same. Breast reconstruction is about working to heal the mind and in turn provide the body with a necessary boost. It does more than preserve a lump of tissue. It helps patients embrace hope and learn to move forward. That’s why women undergo the operation. They want to put that bleak period of their lives behind them and try to find a way to regain what’s been lost. It’s not about vanity or covering up what happened. It’s about feeling whole and recovering something that was taken away from you. Cancer robs us of so much–our happiness, our plans for the future, and our sense of safety. You have to hold on to what’s left, cling to life, and believe. Here are a few more reasons why patients choose breast construction:

  • Retain a Sense of Well-being
  • Move Past Trauma
  • Feel Whole Again
  • Enhance Appearance
  • Keep the Spark of Romance Alive

What are Concerns for Breast Reconstruction?

Sometimes health takes a backseat to beauty. Aesthetic appeal is seen as a competitive sport, demanding immediate gratification, pain, and sacrifice. Many women don’t care what it takes. They just want to look good, or they simply need to feel whole again. This can cause some to push for reconstruction regardless of the consequences. This mindset is often paired with a simplistic understanding of cancer treatment. A mastectomy is seen as a way to cut out the problem, remove it, and be done with it. Reconstruction means starting anew. But cancer can come back. Certain health issues and medical treatments can make patients ineligible to receive reconstruction surgery, and the procedure does come with complications and risks. There are side side effects to be aware of. Patients may have to prepare themselves, learn what to expect, and how to take care of themselves after the operation has been performed. Some forms of breast reconstruction, especially those involving implants, may require touch ups and maintenance. Patients need a firm understanding of all of these things if they want to recover, avoid further health issues, and achieve the desired results. Below is a list of basic concerns that patients may have to take into consideration. Read them, understand them, and continue researching elsewhere.

  • Candidacy

    When patients choose to undergo breast reconstruction, they will be referred to a surgeon who will consult with them to determine whether or not they are a candidate for the procedure. Be sure to provide the surgeon with a complete medical history, and a list of any medications, supplements, and substances you may be taking. The patient should ideally be cancer free and free of any major complications as a result of treatment. Certain disorders, including cardiac disease and those that cause excessive bleeding or clotting may make it impossible to undergo the procedure. Patients who smoke may have to abstain, and patients who are obese may not be eligible for treatment.
  • Preparing for Breast Reconstruction

    Patients will receive an extensive list of pre-operative instructions to follow before they undergo breast reconstruction. This will include a list of medications that they may need to stop, along with any substances and supplements. This is done to avoid serious complications. These medications may include ibuprofen and certain other types of OTC pain relievers. Patients will also be advised on fasting. It’s important to make yourself comfortable during your stay in the hospital. Small items can mean the difference between a nightmare and a leisurely vacation. Bring something that can occupy your time, and try to find items that will help you feel clean without a bath or shower. Make sure your loved ones stay updated. Arrange for transportation, and keep your home prepared for your return.
  • After the Procedure

    There are certain health problems that can spring up as a result of breast reconstruction. These include but are not limited to bleeding, blood clots, problems with anesthesia, tissue necrosis, infection, and problems with implants. There are rare types of cancer that can develop as well. Some of these issues may require further surgery. Know how to recognize them and when to seek out medical assistance. Many of the complications involved are cause for serious concern. Smoking may result in further side effects. Patients should discuss all of these things with their provider before undergoing surgery. They should also look into the necessary steps required to recover as these may vary based on the type of reconstruction received.

Steps to getting your procedure


Step 1


Step 2

Matching with a doctor

Step 3

Getting financing

Step 4

Booking a consultation

Why Yes Doctor for Breast Reconstruction

Cancer treatment is not a passive act. Patients can’t sit there, do what they’re told, and trust the system. They have to take part in every step, do their research, and ensure that they are receiving the best of care. This is also the case with breast reconstruction. We have built Yes Doctor to be a comprehensive source on all forms of cosmetic surgery to aid your in your path, and we have financing options that can make treatment accessible to anyone in need. Apply today without impacting your credit score, and you’ll have the opportunity to break your payments up into easy monthly installments. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Usually when breast reconstruction is paired with a mastectomy, there is a great deal of pain. Losing a breast is like losing a limb. It’s a drastic operation. Patients normally rate that pain at an 8 on a scale of 1 to 10. It may be necessary to speak with the provider about different types of pain management, and how the problem can be treated without developing a tolerance or an addiction to opioids. After a delayed reconstruction, patients may feel sore or numb. There may be a stinging sensation on their chest. That could go away after a few weeks, or it could take several months.
Immediate reconstruction is the most common because it allows the surgeon to create a more realistic aesthetic. That doesn’t always work, but the chances are higher. Patients choose to delay their reconstruction for a number of reasons. They may worry about the impact that reconstruction would have on their health. They could have emotional issues that they would like to work through. They may also want to take their time to decide how best to move forward. Sometimes there is an aversion to the idea of receiving implants due to the cultural and personal implications associated with them. It’s a personal decision.
Breast augmentation, also known as a boob job, is an elective surgery designed to make the breasts appear larger. It is almost exclusively performed on patients who are in good health, and it’s nearly always meant to enhance a patient’s aesthetic appeal. It is not the same as breast reconstruction, and many people feel very strongly about that. Patients who undergo augmentation aren’t facing the hard choice of losing their breasts. That being said, some of the same techniques involved in augmentation are also used during breast reconstruction. Both procedures often require the use of either implants or autologous tissue.
Patients do experience a certain amount of sensation loss after receiving a mastectomy and breast reconstruction. This is because the nerve endings are cut when the breasts are removed. This can be a daunting issue. Patients say that it has a huge effect on their ability to feel normal and move on after cancer treatment. Some types of breast reconstruction, such as those involving implants may result in permanent numbness; others require patients to wait weeks, months, and even years for the sensation to return. Oftentimes the end result is never the same. Little things like this can act as an unwelcome reminder of the trauma of having cancer. But it is unavoidable.