Advanced breast reconstruction procedures can recreate a very natural-looking breast for women who have undergone a mastectomy. Dr. John Zimmermann offers a number of reconstructive surgery options that can be customized to your unique needs. At the Aesthetic Surgery Center of Napa Valley, we understand how difficult this period can be. Our entire team is committed to providing you with compassionate care and state-of-the-art treatment options to help you restore the breasts with results that look natural and beautiful.
Breast Reconstruction Techniques
The field of breast reconstruction has seen a number of advances over the years, and there are multiple options that can be ideal for an individual patient’s needs.
“One and Done” Single Surgery Breast Reconstruction
The “one and done” method is a single surgery option for women seeking breast reconstruction immediately following mastectomy. After the breast cancer is removed via mastectomy, Dr. Zimmerman will be on hand to perform the breast reconstruction surgery right away. There is no waiting and no additional surgery required for the “one and done.”
With this type of breast reconstruction, the patient never has to undergo the psychological stress of being without a breast and women can heal and get back to their lives much sooner after mastectomy than ever before. Unfortunately, not all women are candidates for the “one and done” so it is important to discuss all of your options with your doctor to select the ideal breast reconstruction surgery option for your needs.
If you are interested in learning more about the “one and done” technique and would like to schedule a consultation with our surgeons please contact our practice.
Tissue Expansion / Implant Reconstruction
If there is an inadequate amount of tissue remaining in the breast area after mastectomy, Dr. Zimmermann may be able to perform a tissue expansion breast reconstruction. This involves the placement of an elastic expander under the skin, followed by periodic injections of a saline solution. The expander causes the skin to form a pocket large enough to accommodate a breast implant. Once the pocket has formed, the expander is removed and an permanent silicone gel implant is placed.
This is the most common form of breast reconstruction in the United States.
Flap reconstruction surgery involves the removal of donor tissue from one area of your body and relocating it to the breast area to create a new breast. There are a number of flap reconstruction methods, including TRAM Flap and Latissimus Flap reconstruction, that can offer very good results. Some flap reconstruction techniques involve taking donor tissue from the abdominal region, effectively resulting in a tummy tuck surgery in addition to the breast reconstruction procedure. The type of flap reconstruction surgery that may be best for you will depend on your unique physiology and your individual needs. Your doctor will evaluate you during your initial consultation and talk about the options that may be the most ideal.
Radiation to the mastectomy site may dictate which reconstructive method is most appropriate.
Chemotherapy does not negate the possibility of Breast Reconstruction, although surgery and tissue expansion may be delayed during the actual course of chemotherapy administration.
The opposite breast often needs to be addressed for purposes of symmetry. Breast augmentation, breast lift and breast reduction procedures are commonly performed with this goal in mind.
Nipple reconstruction is the final stage of breast reconstruction, and there are a number of techniques from which this can be achieved. In fact, there are both surgical and non-surgical methods that can provide good results.
The length of the breast reconstruction procedure and specific recovery times are highly dependent on the type of procedure you undergo. Patients should plan on at least two weeks of rest after surgery. Most people are able to resume normal daily routines after four to six weeks. Dr. Zimmermann will be happy to answer all of your questions and address any concerns you may have during the initial consultation.
Dr. Zimmermann will work closely with your surgeon, oncologist, primary care physician, and other members of your caregiving team to create the best possible results from your breast reconstruction procedure.
Contact the Aesthetic Surgery Center of Napa Valley
For more information on breast reconstruction options, or if you would like to schedule a consultation, please contact the Aesthetic Surgery Center of Napa Valley.