Breast Reconstruction Surgery near Cottonwood Heights, UT

Breast reconstruction surgery provides women with hope when they lose their breasts due to cancer. Breast reconstruction can actually happen after the mastectomy. That way, you wouldn’t have to live with one breast. It’s important to note that, depending on the health status of a mastectomy patient, there might be a wait time before undergoing breast reconstruction surgery. No matter the case, though, breast reconstruction surgery is still promising. Breast reconstruction can match the natural breast again. A highly skilled cosmetic surgeon near Cottonwood Heights, UT, Dr. Petersen, will make your body yours again.

What You Need to Know about Breast Reconstruction Surgery

With post-mastectomy breast reconstruction surgery, a breast mound is made in place of the removed breast. This procedure needs to be done in the hospital under general anesthesia. Dr. Petersen will work with your oncologist during the process.

It’s quite normal for breast reconstruction surgery to involve more than one operation, and follow-up procedures could be done on an outpatient basis. Follow-up procedures may only require local anesthesia and often involve a skin expander with a breast implant and the nipple and areola reconstruction.

Here are some of the different ways breast reconstruction is achieved near Cottonwood Heights, UT:

Skin Expander with Breast Implant

Advantages: Easiest surgery and fastest recovery from breast reconstruction surgery. This could be the better procedure for individuals with health issues or contraindications to extensive surgery.

Disadvantages: It involves multiple trips to the office over several weeks/months to undergo expansion. There is a risk of capsule formation or less aesthetic outcome due to thin skin.

Possible Complications:

  • Loss of breast skin requiring removal of the implant. This procedure is not advisable if you have undergone radiation as you are at increased risk for skin loss.
  • Noticeable outlines of the implant due to capsule formation
  • Hard texture due to capsule formation
  • Thin breast skin

Latissimus Dorsi Myocutaneous Flap

Disadvantages: Scar across the back. There may be decreased strength in the back due to muscle loss. Capsule formation could potentially happen and result in the need for additional surgery.

Possible Complications:

  • Circulation problems with the flap
  • Formation of capsule around the implant
  • Symptoms from loss of shoulder muscle, such as decreased strength
  • Loss of back skin requiring skin grafting
  • Collection of fluid (seroma) under incision requiring needle aspiration

Rectus Abdominus Myocutaneous Flap

Advantages: This offers the most natural-looking breast reconstruction with the added benefit of a “tummy tuck.” No implant is needed, so capsule formation is not a risk, and the scar is hidden with clothing.

Disadvantages: There is a risk of herniation of the bowel resulting from moving the rectus abdominus muscle. Abdominal strength is reduced. This procedure is quite extensive and has the most significant risk of needing a blood transfusion.

Possible Complications:

  • Inadequate tissue requiring the use of a breast implant
  • Poor circulation to the flap resulting in tissue loss
  • Weakness or herniation of the abdominal wall
  • Placement of the umbilicus off-center
  • Collection of fluid (seroma) under the skin requiring needle aspiration
  • Infection, in particular of the mesh, requiring surgery for removal

Nipple Reconstruction

The reconstruction of a nipple adds a pleasing final touch to the breast. Nipple reconstruction is a simple outpatient procedure that may be accomplished with local anesthesia. An average time for this is about 1-2 hours. The goal of the surgery is to create a nipple with the look of the one on the opposite breast. Skin is taken from the inner part of the upper thigh or behind the ear. These areas tend to have a darker pigment, which will provide a better contrast to the breast tissue. As a second procedure, the healed nipple can be tattooed to improve the color match of the opposite breast.

Possible complications:

  • Excessive scarring
  • Shrinkage of the projecting part of the nipple
  • Infection of the donor site or the newly created nipple
  • Blood clot under the nipple, which may result in loss of all or part of the new nipple

Contact Our Office near Cottonwood Heights, UT

Breast reconstruction surgery following mastectomy is a very rewarding procedure for both the patient and the surgeon. There are support groups available in the Cottonwood Heights, UT, area where you can meet women who have gone through breast reconstruction surgeries. Ask us for references, books, and support groups in Cottonwood Heights, and take advantage of these invaluable resources.

Our service area for mastectomy reconstruction is throughout Utah, and our office is near Cottonwood Heights, UT. Contact us using the form on the right, and we’ll schedule you a consultation to learn more about your options.