What is Breast Reconstruction?
Breast reconstruction is usually done after a mastectomy or lumpectomy. More than one surgery is sometimes required, and there are a variety of techniques that may be used, depending on your needs.
Dr. Combs has extensive experience with breast reconstruction, helping women restore their breasts to a more normal appearance after breast cancer.
He works closely with your oncologist to determine if your reconstruction can be performed at the same time as your mastectomy or if it would be better for you to wait for a period of time in between the procedures.
During your consultation, Dr. Combs will spend time with you to answer your questions and concerns. He will examine you to determine the best method for your breast reconstruction. It is important to him to operate with the utmost integrity and transparency, making sure that you know what you can reasonably expect from your breast reconstruction.
What to Expect from Breast Reconstruction
Breast reconstruction may be an outpatient procedure or may require a hospital stay. General anesthesia is used. If there is enough breast tissue remaining after the mastectomy, a breast implant can sometimes be inserted immediately at the same time as the mastectomy.
Some women require tissue expansion. In this case, a tissue expander is inserted during the mastectomy. The expander is gradually inflated with sterile water and salt solution in order to stretch the skin and muscle so that there will be enough tissue to cover a breast implant.
When it is time to insert a breast implant, the reconstruction will take place. The nipples can be reconstructed at that time as well.
In the case of a lumpectomy, the remaining breast tissue may be sufficient to simply be repositioned without the need for an implant.
There is scarring after breast reconstruction, but the scars will become lighter and less prominent over time.
Breast Reconstruction Recovery and Aftercare
The amount of recovery time required after your breast reconstruction will depend a great deal on your particular case. We will monitor your progress carefully to make sure that you are healing well and as easily as possible.
Pain, swelling, bruising, and a tight feeling are inevitable for a period of time. You will wear a surgical bra during healing and will be given full instructions for caring for your incisions. Pain medication will be given, as well as antibiotics to prevent infection. Of course, if you have any questions as you heal, do not hesitate to contact us.
Call us today to discuss Breast Reconstruction surgery. We regularly see patients from the greater Portland, Oregon and Vancouver, Washington areas.