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Breast Reconstruction and Its Different Types

Posted Sep 30 2013 8:12am

Breast reconstruction is a procedure through which the breasts are recreated. Typically, the surgeon would perform it after mastectomy. It also helps to create breasts in patients having breast abnormalities or congenital breast absence. Basically, breast reconstruction is done with autologous tissue or with implants. Autologous tissue reconstruction comes with certain advantages such as natural feel and long-lasting results. No complications or problems are usually seen. Further, there is no need of secondary procedures as well after the reconstruction procedure is completed.

DIEP Flap Breast reconstruction

A few years back, women only had the option of breast implants for reconstruction, after breast cancer surgery. Even today, many women depend on this method for restoring the aesthetic symmetry as well as the shape of breasts. However, advanced procedures such as DIEP flap breast reconstruction are emerging now. The procedure is a surgical one and in this, the surgeon would utilize the patient’s own tissue and fat from the tummy area for rebuilding the breast. In this procedure, the abdominal muscles are not touched and only the overlying skin, blood vessels and fat are removed. Commonly, this procedure is also termed as autologous tissue transfer. Given below are some of the benefits:



  • Short reconstructive process

  • More natural look and feel

  • No complications of any sort

  • Less pain

  • Short recovery time

  • Breasts behave like normal parts of the body

Breast Reconstruction with the Help of Implants

Implants can be used for breast reconstruction surgery. This may be done during mastectomy or later. If the surgeon is performing it during mastectomy, then he may perform a skin sparing mastectomy. More skin will be left in order to make the process of reconstruction easy. Benefits include natural-looking breasts, minimal discomfort or pain. Even women having sufficient soft tissue and congenital breast abnormalities are candidates for this procedure. The surgeon would perform the procedure in the following manner:

  • Firstly, he would place a small tissue expander under the chest muscle or the skin. This is a silicone bag in which saline is filled.

  • Over time, the bag would be filled with saline. This is for stretching the soft tissue covering and the skin.

  • The expander is removed and a permanent breast implant inserted once sufficient stretching has occurred.

These options in breast reconstruction surgery are advantageous to women who lose their natural breasts owing to cancer. Improved self-esteem, self-confidence and femininity are among the ensured benefits.


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