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Breast Reconstruction

Breast Reconstruction

Breast Reconstruction for Cancer Patients

Doylestown Health offers comprehensive breast reconstruction services for patients, including an advanced procedure known as deep inferior epigastric perforator (DIEP), which is performed simultaneously with mastectomy or breast reconstruction with implants.

Deep Inferior Epigastric Perforator (DIEP)

The procedure uses harvested skin and fat cells from the abdomen, and a fellowship-trained plastic surgeon specializing in microsurgery transfers the living tissue as a free flap to the chest immediately after mastectomy, creating a natural-looking breast with its own blood supply.

There are several areas on the body where the tissue for the procedure may be taken including the abdomen, back or buttocks.

The procedure typically requires less follow-up care than artificial implants, and is available with mastectomy to treat cancer, as well as for patients who opt for preventive prophylactic mastectomy due to risk factors such as genetics and family history.

Surgeons performing this procedure at Doylestown Health:

Tissue Expansion

Following a mastectomy, patients may opt for tissue expansion as a reconstruction option, which involves expanding the breast skin and muscle using a temporary tissue expander. A silicone balloon expander is inserted under the skin near the area to be repaired and then is gradually filled with sterile salt water over time, causing the skin to stretch and grow.

The procedure is a quick, minor procedure, performed in the plastic surgeon's office. A few months later, the expander is removed and the patient receives either a microvascular flap reconstruction or breast implants.

Breast Reconstruction with Implants

Patients who have sufficient breast skin remaining following mastectomy may be well suited for direct-to-implant breast reconstruction. Direct-to-implant post-mastectomy breast reconstruction allows our surgeons to place a breast implant immediately after mastectomy, avoiding the use of a tissue expander.

There are two types of breast implants:

  • Saline
  • Silicone

Both saline and silicone implants are approved by the FDA and can provide high quality breast reconstruction outcomes.

The proper implant choice is determined by estimating the patient's breast volume and by making measurements of the breasts and chest wall prior to mastectomy. Breast shape and patient desires are also taken into account.

Surgeons performing this procedure at Doylestown Health:

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