Breast Reconstruction – All You Need to Know
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Losing a breast to cancer is traumatic. It is like losing a part of your womanhood, and the scars are emotional as well as physical. Everyone who goes through it is happy to survive, but it isn't enough to just live. You want to regain what you've lost. You want to feel whole again; It is both physically and emotionally necessary.
Many women who survived cancer choose to get reconstruction surgery from a plastic surgeon. With today's technology, it is like you never lost the breast in the first place. Many women even choose to have this procedure as part of their mastectomy.
Breast reconstruction involves the rebuilding of the chest tissues to construct a natural-looking bust. This may include the recreation of a natural-looking areola and nipple. There are two types of reconstruction available, implants and autologous.
Autologous reconstruction involves a variety of operations using relocated flaps of the patient's own tissue from other parts of the body. This could be skin, muscles, or fat from the abdomen, belly or behind. The results are stunning and so natural that no one can tell. There are several different types, but all achieve the same basic effect.
Autologous reconstruction is at the cutting edge of plastic surgery technology, and it is the most favored by women who have lost a breast to cancer because of its natural feel. Many women also feel peace of mind knowing that a foreign object is not being put into their bodies.
When implants are used, they are generally gel implants, as in a typical augmentation procedure. Most women prefer silicone because it has the real feel of natural breasts. However there is some concern about the safety of silicone, and this is why some prefer saline implants, which have a less natural feel but are risk-free. It is always best to talk to your doctor about risks, and the pros and cons of both options.
Like any major surgery, reconstruction surgery requires you to be out of commission for a while. The procedure is usually done on an outpatient basis, but often general anesthetic is used. Although many people take plastic surgery lightly, a breast reconstruction operation is a real operation with its own risks.
During the recovery period you should follow your doctor's orders carefully, to allow your body to heal quickly and be as good as new. Talk to your doctor during the consultation and get an idea of when you can get back to normal life.
The important first step is your consultation. This is a very important consultation for any plastic surgery procedure because of what's at stake. It is also important because it is a very individualized procedure. No two reconstructions procedures are exactly the same.
Breast reconstruction after masectomy is also very emotional, and you want a surgeon you can trust to do it right. You need someone who can give a piece of yourself back to you. Losing a breast to breast cancer isn't the end of your life as a woman. You can get the fullest out of life with reconstruction surgery, and put the past behind you.