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Breast Reconstruction Options

Breast Reconstruction Options | Houston, TexasBreast reconstruction plastic surgery can help a woman restore the size, shape, and appearance of her breast(s) following a mastectomy.

Women considering breast reconstructive surgery should consult their surgeon to establish their candidacy. After the surgeon approves, the next step would be to consult a skilled and experienced breast reconstruction surgeon.

Holding these consultations before the mastectomy will enable the surgeon to devise the most appropriate surgical plan for the patient. Board certified female plastic surgeon Dr. Kristi Hustak provides breast reconstruction patients in Houston, Texas, and surrounding communities.

 

Benefits of Breast Reconstruction

There are various benefits of breast reconstruction surgery, such as:

  • Symmetrical breast appearance in tight-fitting clothing
  • Permanent restoration of the shape of the breast
  • Replacement of the synthetic prosthesis with natural breast
  • Regaining self-confidence and self-worth

 

Breast Reconstruction Options

Today various types of breast reconstructive procedures are available to patients. However, these techniques warrant multiple procedures over several months.

The patient should be able to dedicate the necessary time to have a safe and effective surgery. A candidate should thoroughly understand every facet of the procedure from the surgeon to make an enlightened decision.

Breast reconstruction surgery is undertaken using two primary surgical techniques:

  • Breast implant surgery involving saline or silicone breast implants
  • Tissue flap procedure that uses tissue from the body itself

In a majority of cases, either one of these techniques is used. However, sometimes the surgeon may choose to perform a combination of the two techniques for more appealing breast reconstruction outcomes.

In addition, the surgeon may perform fat grafting to develop the appearance of the remodeled breasts close to natural breasts. They may also reconstruct the nipple or areola to complete the appearance of a breast. But the nipple-areola complex will not have any sensation.

 

Implant Breast Reconstruction

The surgeon will perform the implant reconstruction technique in multiple stages. Initially, the surgeon will place a balloon expander beneath the chest muscle to expand this region.

It can take many months for this area to expand sufficiently to hold a breast implant. Subsequently, the reconstructive surgery will be performed using an implant of a suitable shape and size.

 

Flap Breast Reconstruction

At the outset of this process, the surgeon will remove excess tissue from donor sites such as the buttocks, back, or abdomen which will then be purified prior to being grafted in the chest region.

This tissue will be used to develop the chest mound. In some cases, the surgeon may also insert an implant at the same time.

More incisions may be necessary for the flap method, which leads to slightly more scarring as well as a more extended recovery period. However, the results of the flap method can be more natural looking and sustainable in comparison to the implant method.

 

Reconstruction after Lumpectomy or Partial Mastectomy

It is usually not necessary for women who undergo lumpectomy or partial mastectomy to go for breast reconstruction.

However, at times, the patient may have to live with deformed breasts until they undergo a reconstructive procedure to restore the breast appearance. The surgeon can place smaller implants or perform fat grafting, depending on the needs of the patient.

The patient should discuss the benefits, limitations, risks, and suitability of the breast reconstruction surgery with her surgeon before deciding to undergo the procedure.

 

A Critical Decision

Similar to any other surgical procedure, breast reconstruction also carries its own risks. The most essential factor in undergoing a safe procedure is making a judicious choice for who the surgeon will be.

Female cosmetic surgeon Dr. Kristi Hustak receives patients from Houston, Texas, and nearby areas for breast reconstruction.
For more information on procedures and treatments provided by board-certified female plastic surgeon Dr. Kristi Hustak please call us to schedule a consultation at 713.354.5145 or click here. Offices in Houston, Texas.

Questions to Ask Your Breast Reconstruction Plastic Surgeon

Questions to Ask Your Breast Reconstruction Plastic Surgeon | HoustonGoing ahead with breast reconstruction plastic surgery is a life-changing decision. The patient should decide to proceed with this procedure only after considering all facets of the surgery and clarifying all her concerns from the surgeon.

During the pre-operative consultation, the patient will have an opportunity to ask all the questions from the surgeon. Board certified female plastic surgeon Dr. Kristi Hustak provides breast reconstruction patients in Houston, Texas, and surrounding locations.

 

List of Questions

The patient should ideally enlist any questions that she may have about the procedure or the surgeon’s background beforehand to ensure that no important questions are missed out. The surgeon will offer the patient accurate and in-depth answers to the questions to enable her to make an informed choice.

  • Do you have a board certification from the ABPS in plastic surgery?
  • What number of years of training and experience do you have in the area of cosmetic surgery?
  • Have you undertaken breast surgeries in the past?
  • What breast reconstruction surgery technique would you recommend in my case?
  • How much time will I need to dedicate for the complete process of reconstruction?
  • How long will it take to complete the reconstruction surgery inside the operating room?
  • Which surgical venue would the reconstruction procedure take place in?
  • Am I a stellar candidate for breast reconstruction?
  • Are the outcomes that I am expecting realistic?
  • Can you showcase breast reconstruction ‘before and after’ images?
  • What will the location of the surgical scars be?
  • What anesthesia type would you use for this procedure?
  • What type of lifestyle changes and preparation will I have to undertake prior to the surgery?
  • What will be the post-operative downtime and how many days of leave will I require from my workplace?
  • What are the potential risks and complications associated with breast reconstruction surgery?
  • If the results of my procedure are not as planned, what will be my options for revision surgery?
  • What are the costs involved in breast reconstruction, including the pre and post-op expenses?
  • Will your office be able to provide me with guidance or assistance regarding my medical insurance claim?
  • Can I review a few testimonials of previous patients to understand their experience with your practice?

 

Question about the Technique

The patient should understand the surgeon’s recommendations for the breast reconstruction technique. Breast implants, as well as flap reconstruction, have specific advantages and limitations. In case the patient is not clear on the techniques, they should ask questions and get clarity from the breast surgeon.

 

Question about Tissue Expander

If the patient does not have sufficient skin in the breast area to offer support to the implant, the surgeon may recommend a tissue expander technique to support the implant. The patient should understand if a tissue expander will be necessary or not in her case, and determine her comfort level with the surgeon’s recommended plan.

 

Thinking Ahead

The patient should arrive at a final decision only after she is fully satisfied with the surgeon’s responses to her questions. She may make a list of the questions beforehand and carry this list to the pre-operative consultation with the surgeon. This will ensure that no vital questions are missed out.

The surgeon may say some things that are surprising which can cause you to lose focus. This is why it’s just astute to have the main questions written down so no matter which direction the conversation goes you will always know what questions you need to propose during this crucial meeting.

Female cosmetic surgeon Dr. Kristi Hustak receives patients from Houston, Texas, and nearby areas for breast reconstruction.

For more information on procedures and treatments provided by board-certified female plastic surgeon Dr. Kristi Hustak please call us to schedule a consultation at 713.354.5145 or click here. Offices in Houston, Texas.

What should you expect during a consultation for breast reconstruction?

What to expect from a consultation for breast reconstruction | HoustonIt can be life-changing to decide to undergo breast reconstruction plastic surgery after a mastectomy. For this reason, the patient should proceed carefully and review all aspects of this procedure before deciding to go ahead with it.

The pre-op consultation is an important element of the breast reconstruction process as it offers the patient a comprehensive understanding of the surgery and the multiple stages that it involves over several months.

 

Explaining the Process to the Patient

During the consultation process, the patient will receive in-depth information on the procedure. The surgeon will create an individualized surgical plan for the patient based on the insights they gather during the pre-operative consultation.

Board certified female plastic surgeon Dr. Kristi Hustak provides breast reconstruction to patients in Houston, Texas, and surrounding communities.

 

Ideal Candidates

A patient may undergo a single or double mastectomy which results in the removal of her breast(s). Breast reconstruction plastic surgery may be a suitable procedure for such patients to restore the appearance of the breasts.

The surgeon will elaborate on the physical and emotional benefits that the patient will acquire from this procedure. However, breast reconstruction surgery is not ideal for every patient.

The surgeon will establish whether the patient is presently cancer-free. They will evaluate the patient’s lifestyle behaviors pertaining to smoking and understand if she is committed to devoting significant time and energy to the lengthy process of breast reconstruction.

The surgeon will also review the patient’s health records to understand whether she has any medical conditions that may increase the risks associated with the surgery. In addition, the surgeon will assess how the patient coped with her cancer diagnosis and treatment.

 

Developing Expectations

The surgeon will help the patient develop realistic expectations from the procedure by discussing its benefits and limitations. They may also show her breast reconstruction before and after pictures to help her develop reasonable expectations from the procedure.

Doing so may help the patient understand that breast reconstruction surgeries differ on the basis of the patient’s unique anatomy and situation.

Every patient’s cancer experience is different. Also, their aesthetic and physical needs may vary as well. Good breast reconstruction candidates have reasonable expectations, defined goals, and a positive frame-of-mind about the reconstructive process.

 

Surgical Planning

Depending on the needs of the patient, the breast reconstruction procedure can be undertaken in various ways. Some patients may decide to undergo mastectomy and breast reconstruction simultaneously while others may decide to wait for some time after their mastectomy procedure.

The surgeon will recommend appropriate treatment options to the patient on the basis of her tissue quality, body type, and overall medical condition.

The two primary breast reconstruction surgery techniques are implant and flap reconstruction. Both of these techniques involve different surgical approaches. The surgeon will explain both these techniques to the patient as well as help her make an informed decision.

 

Other Factors

In addition, the surgeon will also inform the patient of all potential risks associated with the procedure at the time of the pre-operative consultation. They will offer the patient details on the anesthesia type to be used, the time taken to complete the surgery, and approximate costs of the procedure.

A majority of patients are eligible to receive insurance coverage for breast reconstruction surgery under their health plans. In case the patient’s insurance provider does not offer complete coverage, they can ask for information on financing avenues from the surgeon’s staff.

Female cosmetic surgeon Dr. Kristi Hustak receives patients from Houston, Texas, and nearby areas for breast reconstruction.
For more information on procedures and treatments provided by board-certified female plastic surgeon Dr. Kristi Hustak please call us to schedule a consultation at 713.354.5145 or click here. Offices in Houston, Texas.

Who is a good candidate for breast reconstruction?

Who is a good candidate for breast reconstruction? | Houston, TexasBreast reconstruction plastic surgery is a significant procedure, and the patient should make a judicious decision.

The reconstruction process may involve a number of procedures over several months. For this reason, a patient should assess all options to establish which one is most appropriate for her.

The surgeon will offer in-depth information to the patient to guide them towards making a well-considered choice. They will also establish her as a candidate for breast reconstruction surgery.

Board certified female plastic surgeon Dr. Kristi Hustak provides breast reconstruction to patients in Houston, Texas, and surrounding locations.

 

Good Candidates

A good candidate for breast reconstructions surgery is a woman who has had one or both breasts removed due to cancer and seeking to restore the appearance of her breasts. The patient can undergo the reconstruction process during her mastectomy or at a later date.

It is important for the patient to have reasonable expectations from this procedure. She must understand that reconstruction cannot create breasts that look and feel similar to natural breasts. Despite this, breast reconstruction can provide the patient with significant emotional and physical benefits in the long-term.

But not every woman who has undergone a mastectomy is a suitable candidate for a breast reconstruction procedure. A decent candidate for this procedure is a woman who:

  • Interested in restoring the shape and size of her breasts
  • Is not a smoker or is amenable to stop smoking according to the surgeon’s guidelines
  • Has coped well with cancer treatments and mastectomy
  • Is free of cancer
  • Does not have serious diabetes or hypertension
  • Has clear objectives and reasonable expectations from the surgery

Patients with diabetes or heart disease can experience a higher level of risk during breast reconstruction surgery. Such patients can also be more susceptible to post-operative complications.

 

Implant and Flap Reconstruction Candidates

Patients who are considering reconstructive procedures such as gluteal, latissimus, DIEP flap, or dorsi techniques should be free of additional medical issues that can affect their surgery.

These techniques involve sourcing tissue from various parts of the body to create the new breast and are more invasive in comparison to the implant method of breast reconstruction.

The flap technique is often recommended to patients who require the reconstruction of only one breast, or unilateral breast reconstruction. The benefit of the flap technique is that it can match the look and feel of the natural breast better.

 

Bilateral Patients

The implant technique may be more suitable for older candidates as this method is less invasive and involves lesser healing time. Women with insufficient availability of excess tissue also benefit more from this technique. The implant technique provides bilateral patients with more symmetrical results.

Breast reconstruction plastic surgery is only suitable for candidates who are willing to commit significant time and effort in preparing and recovering from this procedure.

Female cosmetic surgeon Dr. Kristi Hustak receives patients from Houston, Texas, and nearby areas for breast reconstruction.
For more information on procedures and treatments provided by board-certified female plastic surgeon Dr. Kristi Hustak please call us to schedule a consultation at 713.354.5145 or click here. Offices in Houston, Texas.

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