Breast Reconstruction 101: Everything You Need to Know

The treatment for breast cancer or mastectomy involves complete or partial removal of one or both the breasts. Breast reconstruction takes place after mastectomy and reduces the latter’s psychological impact to a great extent. After a reconstruction, women admitted finding self-confidence and felt better during the cancer recovery period.

The following write-up encompasses everything you must know about breast reconstruction surgery, including the risks. Please check it out now.


During a mastectomy, the surgeon removes the entire breast along with the areola and the nipple so that cancerous cells do not spread. The objective of breast reconstruction is to reshape or reform the removed breast. Although delayed reconstruction is on-demand at present because it allows the treated area to heal, some women opt for this procedure during mastectomy.


The experts performing breast reconstruction in Fairfax, VA, for quite some time now said that this surgery can be divided into two types.

  • Implants

Saline or silicone implants are inserted beneath the breast muscle. It is basically a two-stage process. In the first stage, the surgeon installs a tissue expander that stretches the existing breast tissues as much as possible. After the patient has healed, the surgeon then injects sterile saltwater or silicone implant, which grows until it reaches the pre-determined size. The surgeon removes the expander then to place another implant. As he or she opens the previous scar, there is no need to worry about new ones.

  • Skin Flap

In case of skin flap surgery, the surgeon removes tissues from any other body part and inserts them beneath the breast muscle. He or she usually relies upon the abdomen because it contains maximum fatty tissues, but buttocks, thighs, and back also work wonders.

Skin flap surgery is complex because it involves the transfer of tissue from one part of the body to another. In a free flap, the surgeon removes the tissues along with the blood vessels, but in a pedicle flap, he or she removes only a part of the tissue, leaving the rest behind.


Although breast reconstruction surgery is safe, especially when carried out by a board-certified practitioner, it is better to be acquainted with the possible risks.

  • Bleeding
  • Blood clots
  • Fluid accumulation
  • Extreme tiredness
  • Problems with wound healing and/or anesthesia
  • Infection at the site of the surgery


In order to speed the healing, the patients must implement certain aftercare tips. The experts offering reconstruction and rhinoplasty in Chevy Chase MD said bruising, swelling, and soreness are common side-effects that subside after two to three weeks.

You must apply a medicated ointment to the stitched area and change bandages at home every day. You are allowed to take light showers but do not go swimming or submerge the breasts in a spa bath or Jacuzzi. You should not hit the gym for a month, at least. Lifting weights or working out vigorously force the implants to rupture.

Now that you know more or less everything about the breast reconstruction surgery, please go through it unhesitatingly. Breast reconstruction has helped numerous women who felt unattractive underconfident, or not feminine enough after a breast cancer treatment. That is amazing.