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Implant only Breast Reconstruction


Introduction

implant breast reconstruction mr hassan shaaban

It’s important to recognise that ‘Implant only breast reconstruction’ surgery is not appropriate if you have had a radical mastectomy removing your chest muscle. This is because there will not be enough tissue and skin remaining to cover the implant, and not enough muscle left under which to place it. This procedure is also not suitable if you require post-operative radiotherapy, as this will affect the implant causing it to harden and distort.

Implant only surgery is, however, the most straight-forward way to make a new breast following a mastectomy. There are currently two types of implant available for this procedure, both of which are made using a rubber envelope. One is filled with sterile salt water (saline) and the other is filled with silica gel (silicone.) Implant only surgery means minimal scarring, as no tissue is taken from elsewhere on the body. However, the down side is that the reconstructed breast won’t feel the same as it might if your own body tissue has been used for the reconstruction.

Although the use of implants in breast reconstruction is perfectly safe; an implant is essentially alien to your body. For this reason, a ‘capsule’ might develop around it over time, which will require further surgery to correct it. This is far less likely to occur when an implant is combined your own body tissue to reconstruct your breast. There are two procedural options available for implant only reconstruction. It may be possible to place an implant under your chest muscles at the time of your mastectomy. Alternatively, you could choose to have tissue expansion which slowly stretches the skin and chest muscles over a period of six to eight weeks, allowing Mr Shaaban to place an implant, because there will now be enough tissue to cover it. This latter option may not be successful if you have undergone radiotherapy before your mastectomy, as the skin becomes less elastic as a consequence of the treatment.

 

Consultation

consultation Mr Hassan Shaaban

Mr Hassan Shaaban is a British trained, NHS Consultant Plastic surgeon. One of his specific areas of expertise is in Oncoplastic (post cancer) reconstruction of the face and breast. With more than twenty years’ experience in the field and thousands of successful breast reconstructions behind him, you can be confident that Mr Shaaban is best placed to offer expert advice which is tailored to suit your individual needs.

Mr Shaaban will spend an hour in consultation with you, conducting a thorough physical examination and exploring the options most suitable for your particular circumstances. Mr Shaaban will carefully explain the procedure which he believes will deliver the very best outcome for you. Possible side effects and post operative complications will also be explored with you, although the chances of either of these occurring are greatly reduced when you use an experienced and highly regarded surgeon such as Mr Hassan Shaaban.

It is important to come prepared with any questions that you may have. You will be understandably anxious at this time, and Mr Shaaban will explore any fears that you may have about surgery. It is essential that you have realistic expectations; reconstructive surgery usually produces excellent results, but no outcome is going to be perfect. Very good…yes…but not perfect. Sometimes, surgery may also be required on the healthy breast in order to create more symmetry between it and the newly reconstructed breast. Mr Shaaban will advise whether this additional procedure may be appropriate for your needs.

Procedure

breast reconstruction london liverpool mr shaaban

During surgery to remove your breast (mastectomy) Mr Shaaban may be able to place an implant under your chest muscles (immediate reconstruction) which means that you will only undergo one surgical procedure. If you have larger breasts, tissue may be removed from the healthy breast to secure the implant in the reconstructed breast. If this is not possible, specially processed tissue can be used for this purpose, but if you have any religious or ethical problems with this option, it is important to raise them with Mr Shaaban during your initial consultation.

Often, implant reconstruction is conducted some time after mastectomy (delayed reconstruction.) This may be because there is not enough tissue left to accommodate the implant, so some tissue expansion may be required first.

The process to stretch your skin and muscle can take between six and eight weeks and involves the insertion of a bag into your chest, placed under the skin and any remaining muscle. This will be slowly inflated with a saline solution and will require a weekly visit to the hospital to facilitate the process, until there is sufficient skin and muscle available to accommodate an implant. It may be possible to leave the saline sack in place, or it may be preferable to have a silicone implant in its place. Again, this will have been discussed in consultation with Mr Shaaban.

Recovery

breast reconstruction recovery london liverpool

You will need to wear a supportive bra with no under wiring following surgery. This may need to be slightly bigger than normal, to accommodate any swelling. You will inevitably suffer some discomfort, but this can usually be managed very effectively with paracetamol. There will be bruising and sometimes a tightness around your chest, but these symptoms are entirely normal.

You should avoid any heavy lifting or vigorous exercise for six to eight weeks following the procedure. Ensure that you keep all follow up appointments with Mr Shaaban, in order to manage any post-operative symptoms effectively. This will greatly reduce the risk of developing an infection or further complications.

There may be a need for further surgery to your healthy breast in the future, as a consequence of the ageing process. Your implant may harden and rise over time, while your natural breast will droop with the inevitable force of gravity. Implants will also need to be replaced within ten to twenty years, so further surgery will be required in the future.

To book your consultation with Mr Shaaban at PHI Clinic, London, or in Liverpool, please contact his very helpful team to arrange this for you.