If you are a suitable candidate, you and your surgeon may choose to reconstruct your breast at the same time as your mastectomy. This procedure is known as immediate breast reconstruction.
In this procedure, after your general surgeon completes the mastectomy, your plastic surgeon will begin to reconstruct your breast during the same operation.
Immediate breast reconstruction offers many advantages, including the possibility of fewer scars, fewer surgeries, and the possibility of waking up with reconstructed breast(s). Many patients feel relieved when they wake up postoperatively with breasts, and many experience fewer psychological issues, such as depression, than those who wakeup without reconstruction.
Take some time to think about this before making your decision. Talking with your surgeon can help you decide what's best for you.
Delayed Breast Reconstruction
You and/or your surgeon may desire more time to complete your breast cancer treatment before deciding whether or not to undergo breast reconstruction. If you have already had a mastectomy, you and your surgeon can decide which reconstruction option is best for you at any time in the future. Here are a few reasons why you and your surgeon may consider a delayed breast reconstruction:
- If you and your surgical team feel that, because of the need for post-mastectomy radiation therapy or chemotherapy, it may be best to delay the reconstructive procedure until after your treatments
- You may be concerned about "recurrence" and may want to wait longer before your reconstruction
- You may be feeling overwhelmed by all of the options and decide to treat the cancer first, and concentrate on breast reconstruction later