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Plastic Surgery and Aesthetic Medicine

Breast Reconstruction

Breast reconstruction can provide some sense of normalcy after cancer treatments and a mastectomy.

What to Expect

  • Average Time: The length of the procedure will be discussed at your consultation with Dr. Peterson.
  • Anesthesia: General
  • Am I a good candidate? Have had a mastectomy, in good health, non-smoker, not currently undergoing cancer treatments
  • Recovery: Recovery instructions will be given to you post-surgery.
  • Risks: Scarring, bleeding, infection, poor healing, anesthesia risks, capsular contracture, or implant rupture
  • Inpatient/Outpatient: Both are possible
  • Cost: The cost of the procedure will be discussed at your consultation with Dr. Peterson.

The procedure can restore the form and symmetry of the breasts and provide a natural appearance. If you are struggling with changes brought about due to a single or double mastectomy or a lumpectomy, Dr. Peterson can help you regain your peace of mind and confidence in your appearance.

Every potential breast reconstruction is different, and the right course of action is contingent on the effects of cancer or other condition that forced the patient to have a breast or breast tissue removed.

Reconstruction typically involves a number of procedures. Dr. Peterson may decide that the process can begin at the same time as your mastectomy or suggest that it be delayed until your body has had time to recover from the mastectomy and the effects of cancer treatment.

Surgery Details

If you are undergoing a skin-expansion reconstruction, your surgery will involve insertion of a tissue expander beneath your chest muscle. Dr. Peterson will gradually, over the course of months, fill the expander, creating space beneath the skin for an implant to be inserted. Once the skin is sufficiently stretched, the expander will be removed, and a silicone or saline implant will be inserted during a second procedure.

If you are undergoing a flap procedure, Dr. Peterson will use donor muscle, fat, and skin from your abdomen or back to reconstruct the breast. There are a number of different types of flap procedures. Sometimes, these techniques can be used to form a complete breast. Other times, they will provide a base to accept a breast implant.

Careful monitoring of breast health is a key component of a successful recovery from breast reconstruction. Be sure to perform self-exams and schedule mammograms consistently.

As a reconstructive procedure, your insurance company will likely pick up some of the cost of your breast reconstruction. Depending on your particular provider, insurance may cover the majority or only a small portion of your costs. Our office staff will work with you to understand how much assistance your insurance company will provide.