What Is Breast Reconstruction Surgery?
Breast Reconstruction Surgery is a vital procedure that offers hope and restores confidence in many patients after mastectomy or lumpectomy and are performed to recreate a breast’s appearance after removal due to cancer or other diseases. This surgery rebuilds the breast’s shape, appearance, and size. The reconstructive process often involves several surgeries and can be accomplished using artificial implants or natural tissue flaps.
What Are The Different Types of Breast Reconstruction Surgery In South Africa?
Implant Breast Reconstruction
Implant Reconstruction is a popular method for recreating the breast’s shape and volume following a mastectomy or lumpectomy. This procedure uses silicone implants to achieve a natural appearance. Below, we will explore the types, processes, advantages, and considerations of implant reconstruction.
- Silicone Implants: These implants contain silicone gel, providing a feel that’s more akin to natural breast tissue. They come in different sizes and shapes to match the patient’s preference and anatomy.
Autologous or Flap Breast Reconstruction
This technique utilizes tissue from another part of the body to reconstruct the breast. Commonly harvested areas include the abdomen, back, or buttocks.
Types of Flap Reconstruction
- TRAM Flap (Transverse Rectus Abdominis Myocutaneous): Utilizing tissue from the abdomen, the TRAM flap is one of the most common types. It can be performed as a free flap or a pedicled flap, depending on whether the tissue is completely detached or left connected to its original blood supply.
- DIEP Flap (Deep Inferior Epigastric Perforator): Similar to the TRAM flap but sparing the abdominal muscles, the DIEP flap only uses skin and fat, preserving muscle strength.
- Latissimus Dorsi Flap: This technique involves taking tissue from the back, near the shoulder blade. It’s often combined with an implant to achieve the desired size.
- SGAP and IGAP Flaps (Superior and Inferior Gluteal Artery Perforator): These techniques use tissue from the buttocks and are suitable options for women who may not have sufficient tissue in the abdomen or back.
What Are The Benefits of Breast Reconstruction Surgery?
- Physical Restoration: It helps in regaining the natural appearance of the breast.
- Emotional Healing: Restoring the breast’s appearance can significantly enhance self-esteem and body image.
- Symmetry: Reconstruction ensures that the breasts are symmetrical, contributing to a balanced appearance.
Choosing the Right Surgeon For Breast Reconstruction Surgery
Finding a skilled and experienced surgeon is crucial. Research their qualifications, ask for before-and-after photos, and schedule consultations to ensure you feel comfortable with your choice.