Breast reconstruction has proven to be most effective for those women whose mastectomies have cured their cancer. If other health conditions are present or if the patient is a smoker, breast reconstruction is counter-indicated. Most mastectomy patients, however, chose reconstruction either at the time of the mastectomy or soon after, as it can involve a series of surgeries, so the sooner the process is begun, the sooner the patient can be on the road to full recovery.
Just as every patient is different, every breast is different, as is every breast reconstruction surgery. This is why Dr. Yovino will meet with you to discuss your specific goals when it comes to breast reconstruction and how those goals can be met given your body and medical needs. In some cases, tissue expanders are placed behind the pectoral muscle. After a period of time, a solution can be injected gradually over a period of several weeks into the expander until the desired breast size is achieved. This area is then allowed to heal, and after several months, the expander is removed while the patient is under general anesthesia. During this time, the pocket where the expander had been located is adjusted so as to be symmetrical with the other breast, and if necessary, an implant can be inserted. Finally, once the reconstructed breast has healed, and Dr. Yovino has determined that the breasts look even and natural, a nipple, and areola can be fashioned on the reconstructed breast.