Breast cancer is, unfortunately, a common disease; it is estimated that 1 in 8 women will suffer it throughout their lives.
The solution requires removal of the tumor, which can be done in two ways: with a mastectomy (ie, removing the entire breast) or by removing only the tumor and some of the tissue surrounding it, but keeping the rest of the breast intact. Other surgical techniques such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy may be associated with this surgical procedure, depending on the type and extent of the tumor. This will largely depend on whether the tumor has spread to axillary lymph nodes or other structures, which is usually determined by surgical exploration of the axilla during mastectomy, or by radiological tests such as CT or MRI.
The loss of the breast as a result of mastectomy or the deformity of the breast after removal of the tumor can lead to a devastating psychological sequelae in the woman. Fortunately, there are multiple techniques of reconstructive plastic surgery that allow us to restore the shape and the natural appearance of the breast.
At Plàstica we work with a multidisciplinary team formed not only of plastic surgeons, but also by oncologists, gynecologists, pathologists and nuclear medicine specialists to allow accurate diagnosis, removal of the tumor and adequate follow-up to control its recurrence, and of course, surgical reconstruction of the breast.
Is it possible to perform breast reconstruction just after getting a mastectomy?
It is possible, and it is the current trend because of the aesthetic and psychological benefits, since the patient does not have to live with her entire breast removed as she wakes up from the operation with a new breast.
When the immediate reconstruction is not possible?
In some cases, the extent or type of tumor makes radiotherapy necessary after mastectomy. Radiotherapy, although indispensable for local control of the tumor, has detrimental effects on the reconstruction, especially if prosthesis are used. In these cases, a delayed reconstruction is usually chosen once the radio has been completed.
Whose reconstruction techniques are available today?
Several techniques can be used to restore the breast after mastectomy, and the choice of one or the other is assessed individually for each patient:
1 Breast reconstruction with expanders and prostheses of cohesive silicone gel: it is the most common reconstruction used nowadays. It consists in introducing an expander under the pectoralis muscle that will expand the skin, which allows, in a second surgery, to replace it with a definitive breast prosthesis.
2 Using tissue of the patient (autologous reconstruction): uses skin, subcutaneous tissue or muscle of the patient, usually in locations other than the breast:
• Back: using skin and lattisimus dorsi muscle
• Abdomen: uses excess abdominal tissue (which would be removed in an aesthetic abdominoplasty) to reconstruct the breast. It provides a natural reconstruction without the use of prosthesis.
• Other locations, if the former are not available: gluteal region, outer or inner thighs, etc …
3 Fat grafting: by liposuction, the patient’s own adipose tissue is obtained which, after being treated properly, can be used to correct the defects of the breast after removal of the tumor, or in a manner complementary to previous techniques to improve its result. In Plàstica we are specialists in the use of fat grafting. There is the possibility of combining the fat graft with regenerative cells. The results are better because thanks to the enrichment it is less probable the reabsorption of the fat, being more difficult experiencing volumen loss.
4 Use of biological materials: Such as acellular dermal matrix, usually in combination with prosthesis.
What is the last step of the breast reconstruction?
In most cases, the reconstruction ends with the restoration of the areola-nipple complex. By relatively simple surgical techniques that can be performed under local anesthesia, it is possible to recreate the nipple on the new breast. The areola can be restored by means of tattoing or micropigmentation.
Why is Plàstica your best choice for reconstruction?
We are a team with extensive experience in the field of breast reconstruction and for us the well-being of our patients is fundamental. That is why we carry out a continuous follow-up to see the evolution after the surgery. All our clients have included the revisions during the first year after treatment.
For more information or any query do not hesitate to contact us.
Do not hesitate to contact us for further information
- Hospital Quirón Palmaplanas
Camí dels Reis, 308
07010 Palma de Mallorca
- +34 971 910 075 / +34 971 910 074
- Monday and Thursday 09:00 - 17:00
- Tuesday and Wednesday 09:00 - 19:30
- Friday 09:00 - 15:00