The World Health Organization has found that breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women, affecting 2.1 million women annually. As breast cancer survival rates increase – thanks to improved awareness about self-exams and getting regular mammograms – having breast reconstruction after (or during) a lumpectomy or a mastectomy is becoming an immediate choice.
What Is Breast Reconstruction?
Breast reconstruction is a surgical procedure for correcting a woman’s breast shape. It is often done during breast cancer surgery, but it can also be performed at a later date. A plastic surgeon is your best choice for performing reconstructive breast surgery after having had a lumpectomy or a full mastectomy.
The new breast shape can be built using an implant and/or your own tissue from another part of your body, such as your tummy. Reconstructed breasts do not usually have a nipple or areola, but it can be created with surgery or medical tattooing.
Should I Have Breast Reconstruction?
Breast reconstruction can play a critical role in the restoration of normalcy and self-esteem for women who undergo a mastectomy or lumpectomy. This procedure can help restore the look and feel of the breast after cancer surgery, and the plastic surgeon will make it look balanced and symmetrical with the other breast.
You are an ideal candidate for breast reconstruction surgery if your breast has been removed completely or partially due to a malignant or benign tumor. If the breast cancer is newly diagnosed and you choose not to have reconstruction during the cancer removal surgery, do not hesitate to put it off until later. Every woman has her own comfort level, and you can have the reconstruction operation done whenever you are ready.
It’s also possible to have this surgery if you previously underwent a mastectomy or lumpectomy and had a defect from the procedure. This can occur because different women’s bodies heal differently from tumor-removal surgery.
When Should I Have Breast Reconstructive Surgery?
Aside from the considerations listed above, the option of breast reconstruction surgery will also depend on whether you are undergoing other breast cancer treatments, including chemotherapy or radiation. If you are undergoing chemotherapy or radiation therapy as part of your breast cancer treatment, you may have to delay reconstruction for up to 12 months.
Consulting with your doctor about breast reconstruction is essential before your cancer surgery. You need to learn your options for the restoration before you undergo a mastectomy. There is a chance reconstructive surgery – such as an implant – could interfere with the ongoing treatment of your breast cancer.
Plastic Surgeon in New Jersey
If you have had a mastectomy or a breast lumpectomy and are thinking of having breast reconstruction, contact our caring team at Iorio Plastic Surgery & Medspa to schedule a consultation. We will discuss your options with you and explain what might work best for your body.