Coming out of a mastectomy to eradicate breast cancer is a tough battle. It leaves behind an impact on the bodies of women cancer survivors that is visible in the form of complete or partial loss of breast size, deformation of the shape of the affected breast, asymmetry across the breasts, loss of firmness and texture and distortion of the position of the affected breast.
As such the impact of a mastectomy to fight breast cancer is not just limited to loss of breasts. A deformation of the breast delves a strong blow to the self-esteem and self-confidence of affected women and in many cases leads to a depressing loss of identity. Under such circumstances a breast reconstruction can be an empowering choice. Using modern breast reconstruction techniques, breast surgeons can drastically change things for the better of women cancer survivors. Here is all that you need to know about the procedure of a breast implant reconstruction and the physical and psychological benefits it brings.
How Breast Augmentation Can Help Cancer Survivors?
While the effects of mastectomy and loss of breast are long lasting, these are by no means irreversible. Women cancer survivors can look forward to regaining some of their lost confidence and their original sense of self, thanks to the availability of the option of breast augmentation for cancer survivors. A breast reconstruction after mastectomy allows cancer survivors to not only reclaim their original aesthetics but also regain their long lost sense of self, their confidence and the courage to face life all over again. Breast surgeons can reconstruct a breast by making appropriate use of implants and tissue expanders.
What is a Breast Implant Reconstruction?
Women who have undergone mastectomy can choose to undergo a breast augmentation. Here is a snapshot of what a general procedure of breast implant reconstruction is:
- Breast augmentation entails the placement of inflatable saline or silicone implants by breast surgeons behind the pectoral muscle.
- The initial implant expands and stretches out the skin and the surrounding tissues to form a new breast for the cancer survivor.
- There are two options. First, women cancer survivors can opt for a breast reconstruction in conjunction with the mastectomy, in which case it is referred to as immediate breast reconstruction.
- Second, they can decide to wait for the breast cancer therapy to be completed and complete healing of the mastectomy incisions to take place.
- In the second case, it is referred to as delayed breast reconstruction and the concerned cancer survivors may have to wait for months or even years after the mastectomy to undergo a breast augmentation.
- In both cases, it is common practice for breast surgeons to harvest a portion of the skin and tissues on the abdominal wall of the patient and place it on the operated area of the breast.
- A microsurgery technique called the DIEP flap ensures that there is minimal or negligible damage to the abdominal wall of the patient undergoing a breast augmentation procedure.
Physical Benefits of a Breast Augmentation
Given the physical trauma of breast cancer and the long lasting disfigurement of the body caused by mastectomy in the form of breast loss, it makes enormous good sense to suggest that breast augmentation has a rejuvenating effect on the bodies of women cancer survivors. Following are the major benefits of breast augmentation:
- First, breast reconstruction after mastectomy allows women to get back their lost bust line. When successfully done a skilled breast surgeon, the breasts formed post the implants develop firmness and retain the shape and position of the original breasts.
- Second, while the use of DIEP flap technique is time consuming, it allows cancer survivors to make use of their own tissues. Given that many cases require a second operation to remove the expanders and replace them with long term implants, the use of DIEP flap is a very handy option.
- Third, the DIEP flap technique used for microsurgery does bare minimum damage to the abdominal wall.
- Fourth, not only this, a breast reconstruction also allows surgeons to reconstruct the nipples after the surgery. In fact, colors can be matched for the nipple and areola.
- Fifth, if the concerned cancer survivor originally had asymmetrical breasts or hitherto may have developed asymmetries in her breasts owing to the effects of mastectomy, breast surgeons can restore parity of size, shape and position of a breast through breast reconstruction.
Psychological Benefits of a Breast Augmentation
Beyond the obvious physiological benefits that await women cancer survivors in the aftermath of undergoing a breast augmentation, there are psychological benefits as well. Some of the major psychological benefits of breast augmentation are as follows:
- First, it definitely beyond an iota of doubt brings back the lost sense of self and improves confidence of cancer surviving women. They no longer feel that they are survivors. They know that they have been victors in an otherwise long drawn and gruelling battle.
- Second, it opens up many lifestyle choices allowing women to dress the way they want to, hang out with people, step out in the open, knowing that they have accomplished a fightback of a lifetime.
- Third, in many cases a breast augmentation can actually make women feel more youthful. This happens due to a number of reasons but greatly because of the reason that women begin to believe in themselves.
- Fourth, the battle against breast cancer is both clinical and personal. While mastectomy can successfully prolong the lives of women cancer survivors, breast augmentation gives them a second chance to laugh, love and live.
Unlocking Life from the Vault of Cancer
A breast augmentation procedure is not just about aesthetics and what happens to the bodies of cancer surviving women on the outside. By choosing a skilled breast surgeon you can overcome both physical and psychological challenges of breast loss. When you are looking at a decision as important and life-altering as a breast implant reconstruction, it is important that you choose a skilled breast surgeon who understands not just the craft of surgery, but the unique demands of your body.
Texas Center for Breast and Body has enabled many women to take a leap of faith, hand held them through successful breast implant procedures and opened up new avenues in their lives. Schedule an appointment with us to know the options you have and the best way to move forward.