Broadly speaking, breast reconstruction procedures fall into one of two categories:
Natural tissue generally provides the most natural-appearing (and feeling), as well as most durable type of breast restoration. Some women, however, may prefer reconstruction with breast implants, especially if they want to avoid a scar on a location other than the breast/s.
Living tissue that is surgically relocated from one part of the body to another is called a “flap.” The most advanced methods of natural-tissue breast reconstruction, known collectively as perforator flaps, use natural tissue to restore a breast without compromising a woman’s muscles in the process. These procedures can be performed with a minimal amount of pain. They typically result in a reconstructed breast that is warm, soft and forever part of a woman’s body. Our practice has roughly a 99.5% success rate for these procedures. Because perforator flaps do not remove muscle, these procedures are now considered by many experts to be the gold standard for natural-tissue breast reconstruction.
For women who opt to have breast reconstruction using breast implants, it is now sometimes possible to place a breast implant directly into the space created by the mastectomy, just underneath the skin of the breast. This approach, sometimes called pre-pectoral breast implant reconstruction, is currently the most state-of-the-art approach to reconstruction using breast implants. While not suitable in every situation, it is often preferred over the traditional approach of tissue expander/breast implant reconstruction that involves surgical disruption of the muscles of the chest that can be painful in the short term, and may compromise muscle function and be uncomfortable in the long term.