Breast Reconstruction Houston
Following mastectomy for breast cancer, an immediate or delayed reconstruction can be performed. Tissue expanders using saline breast implants or flaps of tissue from the back or abdomen can be used to create a breast mound. The TRAM flap (transverse rectus abdominus muscle flap) is most popular to create a natural appearing breast. The alternative flap is called a Latissimus Dorsi Flap and is reconstructed from tissue transferred and rotated to the breast from the back.
The decision regarding the timing for reconstruction may be dictated by the type of tumor or extent of lymph node invasion. Radiation Therapy may cause shrinkage of a reconstructed breast and therefore it may be advisable to postpone reconstruction until after the Radiotherapy treatments are finished.
Breast Reconstruction with breast implants is a simpler method than flap reconstruction, but the implant can become hard due to capsular contracture from scarring with time. However, very thin women may not have enough tissue to spare from the abdomen or back to perform flap reconstruction. In this case, tissue expanders can be placed immediately at the time of the Mastectomy allowing the chest skin to stretch by weekly saline injections into the expander in the office.
Subsequently, the expanders are removed two to three months later and replaced with a permanent silicone gel implant.
Microvascular surgery using free flaps of tissue from the abdomen or back can also be performed to create the breast mound.
Nipple areola reconstruction is the final stage regardless of whether an implant or flap has been used for breast mound reconstruction. Whether a 2 stage or 3 stage procedure has been performed the breast reconstruction can usually be completed in 3 months.
Patients interested in information on Breast Reconstruction in Houston can call the Eisemann Plastic Surgery Center in Houston at 713-790-1711, or by completing our online contact form.