Breast reconstruction is the final healing stage for breast cancer survivors, allowing them to regain a sense of normalcy and dignity. The surgery restores a beautiful, natural breast appearance that can improve quality of life and increase self-confidence. Breast reconstruction can be performed immediately, or it can be undergone at a later date down the line. There are benefits to both types of procedures that can be discussed during your consultation. In either case, Dr. Sofonio works with your oncologist and cancer treatment team to ensure the best possible aesthetic outcome and a seamless, stress-free patient experience.

What is breast reconstruction?

Breast reconstruction is a personalized procedure designed with your individual needs and wishes in mind. The techniques used will depend on several different factors, including age, overall health, medical history, and whether or not you underwent radiation as part of your treatment. The two main methods of breast reconstruction are implant-based procedures using silicone or saline implants to enhance and restore the breasts or microvascular surgeries using autologous tissue to create flap-based breast mounds. Your surgeon will explain the pros and cons of each choice during your private consultation. 

What is flap breast reconstruction?

Flap reconstruction uses skin, fat, and tissue taken from another part of the body to create new, authentic-looking breast mounds. The flaps can be formed with tissue from the abdominal area (DIEP and SIEA flaps) without disturbing the stomach muscles. Flaps can also be formed using skin and fat obtained from the buttocks (SGAP flap). In general, flap surgery is beneficial in that patients do not have to be concerned about implant complications, leakage, or replacement. However, recovery with implant reconstruction is less time-consuming than with flap surgery.

What are the benefits of breast reconstruction?

  • Improves self-image
    Enhances self-esteem
    Provides closure
    Restores balance and beauty to the upper body
    Offers long-lasting results
    Treatment can be customized to your needs

Who makes an ideal candidate for breast reconstruction?

Breast reconstruction is a personal decision for each woman. The best way to tell if the procedure is right for you is to undergo an in-depth consultation with Dr. Sofonio, who can answer all your questions and discuss the options that are right for your body. Ideal candidates for breast reconstruction are free from any pressing medical issues, and they have a positive, realistic outlook towards their results.

What will my recovery entail?

After surgery, it is common to experience swelling, bruising, tenderness, and discomfort. For flap surgery patients, this will occur not only in the chest but also at the donor regions. The doctor will ensure you are comfortable during your recovery by providing prescriptions for pain medications. You will be fitted with a support bra, which can help reduce swelling and keep your new sculpted breasts intact. Within a few days of your surgery, you can begin taking gentle walks to improve your circulation. Dr. Sofonio will present you with a detailed aftercare plan and will meet with you for regular follow-up visits.

Dr. Sofonio

Why choose Dr. Sofonio?

Dr. Sofonio graduated from UCLA Medical School, going on to complete a general surgery residency at the University of Hawaii. He then continued to hone his skills in plastic and reconstructive surgery at the Medical College of Ohio. He applies a seasoned sense of artistry to every procedure he performs, delivering exquisite, personalized results. All surgeries take place at our state-of-the-art surgical facility, accredited by the AAAHC (Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care), where your safety and well-being are placed as our highest priorities.

FAQ

What is microsurgery?

The value of microsurgery as it relates to breast reconstruction is that it allows the surgeon to create viable flaps for breast enhancement, utilizing fat and tissue without disturbing the muscles. During microsurgery, tiny blood vessels and nerves can be connected using specialized instruments and a microscope.

Will I be able to retain sensation in my breasts?

With implant reconstruction, it is not possible to regain breast sensation. However, with flap surgery, there is the possibility of connecting a sensory nerve to the breast mound through microsurgery, restoring some degree of feeling to the area.

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