Adelaide Plastic Surgery

Breast Reconstruction

Breast Reconstruction

You’ll be simply amazed at what we have been able to achieve, restoring our patients’ breasts and their confidence.

Breast Reconstruction

When breast reconstruction can help

Reconstruction is certainly worthy of consideration if:

  • your breasts have not developed normally through congenital issues (for example, Poland’s Syndrome or asymmetry related to the failure of tissue growth);
  • you’ve suffered injury from trauma or burns; or
  • you are about to have, or have already undergone, a full or partial mastectomy.

Post-mastectomy reconstruction

If you’re having a breast removed to fight a malignant cancer, it’s important you’re aware that you can have it reconstructed. (Sometimes, regrettably, this is not always discussed.) This may be possible at the time of your mastectomy (immediate reconstruction) or at the completion of any extra treatment, such as radio- or chemotherapy. Reconstruction is also a sound option for those considering prophylactic bilateral mastectomy, either because you’ve had breast cancer and don’t wish to risk another, or there’s a strong probability you’ll develop a breast tumour based on your family history or specific genetic testing. If this is you then you may wish to discuss this with our Breast Surgeon Beverley Fosh who has a special interest in breast cancer.

Immediate or delayed reconstruction?

Honestly, there are advantages and disadvantages associated with both options. First, there is a perception that complications can be greater for those who have immediate reconstruction, depending on the technique adopted, which may delay further treatment. However, in delayed reconstruction, the aesthetic results may not be quite as good. Principally, this is due to the effects of scarring on the tissue remaining after a mastectomy. Don’t worry: good, safe results are still possible.

What is the procedure?

Adelaide Plastic Surgery’s breast surgeon, Doctor Beverley Fosh, will consult with you and our reconstruction specialists to settle on the approach that will best restore your body image without compromising the safe management of your breast disease. If immediate reconstruction is considered appropriate, Bev will coordinate with one of our plastic surgeons to expedite the matter.

Reconstruction will often require two operations: the initial procedure forms the breast; the second creates the nipple and can also possibly correct residual scars and refine the shape. Our surgeons are skilled in all the latest breast reconstructive techniques, including:

  • using tissue expanders and breast prostheses;
  • using sheets of tissue incorporating muscle skin and underlying fat (myocutaneous flaps), either as a pedicled flap with its blood supply retained intact (e.g., a pedicled latissimus dorsi flap or a pedicled TRAM flap) or as a free flap where the blood vessels are divided and then re-attached to those in the proximity of the breast/chest defect (e.g., a free TRAM flap or DIEP flap);
  • combining a prosthesis with a patient’s own tissue; and
  • therapeutic reduction mammoplasty.

Things to consider

Trauma brings stress and some of these decisions will need to be made swiftly. The situation is rarely ideal. So we encourage a full and frank (but totally supportive) discussion to bring out and answer your hopes and fears.

Issues important for you to consider are:

  • do you need to reconstruct both breasts?
  • what risks or complications will you accept to obtain the best result?
  • would you consider silicone implants instead of using your own tissue exclusively?
  • what impact will this have on your lifestyle?
  • how much scarring are you prepared for?

Whilst these are hard questions, they need to be asked. But don’t worry: at Adelaide Plastic Surgery, we’ll will give you all the context and information you need along with any possible complications during your consultation. And we’re always here to support you right through your recovery.

View our post-operation information here

Procedure Video

Our Breast Reconstruction Surgeons