Austin Plastic Surgery Institute understands patients have already endured a trying period due to breast cancer and other diseases, and that breast reconstruction procedures can be very stressful on patients if not handled with care. That is why Austin Plastic Surgery Institute offers a breast reconstruction surgery utilizing several different methods. From consultation in our Austin, TX office to recovery, our highly trained staff and board-certified plastic surgeons will be by your side every step of the way to ease stress and ensure you are comfortable. With Austin PSI’s breast reconstruction procedure, patient’s breasts will look balanced, breast contour and nipple are restored, and it remedies the use of an external prosthesis.
Breast Reconstruction Reviews
"Dr. Wilder is awesome. He fixed my capsular contracture in left breast from a previous Dr. and his whole team is a solid and upbeat unit. I really appreciated his bedside manner. After a lot of consultations you realize there are a lot of doctors who A. Tell you what you want to hear and promise you the moon B. Automatically tell you the most expensive option is the best idea or C. Tell you you would look TERRIBLE a certain size (yes this happened with a Dr. T. here in Austin.) Anyways, I felt Dr. Wilder was very transparent and realistic with me and my expectations and gave his honest opinion. He definitely took the time to answer my million questions he probably gets daily like it was his first time hearing it. If you're searching, at least do yourself a favor and consult with him. His Nurse Tricia is also a sweetheart and super attentive and it was the best anesthesia experience I've ever had. Mitzi, who helped me with scheduling and paperwork is also sweet as pie. Thanks Dr. Wilder!"- E.F. / Yelp / Mar 02, 2017
Each reconstruction technique will be tailored according to the patient’s physical health, aesthetic goals, and personal preferences. There are many factors playing into the approach that will be taken. The ultimate goal is to ensure the patient is healthy and happy with their final breast results.
There are two primary categories of breast reconstruction techniques:
- Procedures that involve using a breast implant
- Procedures that are autologous (use the patient’s own body’s tissue to reconstruct and recreate the breast)
Reconstruction With Implants
Breast reconstruction using silicone or saline implants is a common approach that generally starts with the use of a tissue expander to help form a suitable pocket for an implant. The expander may be inserted after the mastectomy procedure or during the same operative session. Over the course of several months, the expander will slowly be enlarged using a sterile solution injected through a port residing under the skin. During the scheduled reconstruction surgery, the expanders are removed and replaced with permanent implants.
If there is limited tissue inside the breast, or limited skin on the outside, tissue may be used from another part of the patient’s body to supplement this loss. The most common areas to support this process are the buttocks, thigh or abdomen. This is an autologous approach to breast reconstruction. The TRAM flap (Transverse Rectus Abdominus Myocutaneous), the DIEP flap and SIEA flap techniques involve taking skin and fat from the abdomen and relocating it to the breast. The Latissimus Dorsi Flap is another common method using tissue from the patient’s back.
Things to Consider
During your first consultation to discuss reconstruction surgery, it is important to disclose where you are in the treatment process and which cancer surgeon is treating you, as well as provide any necessary pathology reports. The reconstruction process may take place in multiple steps if the breast tissue needs to be stretched to make room for implants. This discovery phase will help guide the reconstruction process so patients end up with a new breast that is the size, shape and look they want.
During a mastectomy, the nipple and areola often cannot be saved. The loss of one’s nipple and areola can be as unnerving as the removal of the breast itself. However, reconstruction techniques have advanced greatly, allowing plastic surgeons the opportunity to recreate these areas of the breast to give a natural, aesthetically appealing appearance. In a separate procedure, the nipple is created using existing breast skin or from the abdominal or latissimus flap. Using a tattoo technique, the areola is recreated with a skin graft taken from the thigh, abdomen or back.
Breast reconstruction surgery is performed under general anesthesia at an accredited surgical facility. Some patients may be required to stay in the hospital to be monitored for complications. Patients who have had reconstruction using a flap technique will usually be required to stay in the hospital for 2-5 days. The recovery process can be somewhat lengthy, but many view it as the final step in their cancer journey thus the experience can be very rewarding. Most women are thankful to have had the opportunity to restore their breasts and are satisfied with their results.
Plan Your Procedure
- Average Cost
- From $9,500
- Average Procedure Time
- 2-3 hours
- Procedure Recovery Location
- In & Out-Patient
Breast Reconstruction FAQs
This is a very specialized surgery that requires extensive knowledge, skill and experience. It is very important to research and find a qualified and reputable plastic surgeon who has experience with breast reconstruction surgery.
Can I Delay This Surgery?
In many situations, it is recommended to start the reconstruction process at the same time as the mastectomy. Therefore, it is a good idea to have your breast cancer surgeon and your plastic surgeon begin communicating about the steps that will follow. An advantage of doing the procedure immediately is waking up from your mastectomy surgery with the reconstruction process in place. The soft tissue that surrounds the breast will heal simultaneously with the reconstruction, which can enhance the final results.
A reconstructed breast will not have the same sensation as the breast did before the mastectomy. However, over time, some of this sensation will return to normal. This will depend on the extent of the reconstruction process and will vary by patient.