Implant-based reconstruction, we get some phenomenal results.

There are one stage options and two stage options for implant reconstruction.

I think our cosmetic results are far superior with two stage reconstruction, and what that involves is essentially a two step process.

At the time of mastectomy, we go ahead and place a temporary tissue expander implant. Now this is a hard, under-construction, saline-filled implant that was placed at the time of mastectomy. We try to place this at the time of a skin-sparing masectomy.

I utilize a collagen sheet known as AlloDerm or Strattice to create a nice hammock effect that facilitates a nice, natural contour and shapes your reconstructed breast.

Now this tissue expander implant, if it's performed at the time of the skin-sparing mastectomy, is filled as much as possible so that you can wake up with some form of breast that looks pretty good in terms of size and volume.

Now, of course, if we can't do a skin-sparing mastectomy, then that's okay, because this is a tissue expander implant. We can stretch out the skin in the office slowly to achieve the size that you want. You're in the driver seat. You'll tell us the size that you want.

Once we achieve that size, we wait a few weeks to allow the implant to settle and the skin to soften and we go back for a quick outpatient surgery where we take the hard temporary tissue expander implant out and we place the final implant which can be a final saline implant or a final silicone-gel implant.

Most of our patients do opt for the silicone gel implants as their final reconstructive implant, because it does give a softer more natural feel.

Now the advantage of implant reconstruction is that these are generally smaller surgeries that can be completed in under two hours, often times with an overnight stay or outpatient surgery.

The other advantage of implant reconstruction is in the right candidates we get some phenomenal results in terms of shape and size where they often look like cosmetic augmentation results, of course with mastectomy scars and other scars that are necessary for your successful cancer treatment.

The potential disadvantages of reconstruction are although implants both saline and silicone gel implants are very safe medical devices, they will not increase your risk for breast cancer occurrence. They are very safe. They will not make you sick. They are foreign bodies, so there is always risk of implant infection, scar tissue forming around your implants, or your implants can rupture.

In these cases, you will need to have revision surgery to replace implants. So ultimately implant reconstruction is a foreign body reconstruction.

We get some phenomenal results with implant reconstruction, but it's not right for everyone.

Breast Reconstruction with Implants

Doctor Bob Basu discusses the use of implants in Breast Reconstruction.