Posted on September 2, 2021 in Breast Reconstruction
If you are considering breast reconstruction, you probably have some questions about the procedure, recovery period, and potential risks. Dr. Ellen can answer any questions you may have during your consultation, but it’s best to be prepared with some background knowledge on the surgery. Here are some of the basics of breast reconstruction.
Your Breast Reconstruction Consultation
During your breast reconstruction consultation, Dr. Ellen will examine the area, evaluate your health, and develop a plan for your surgery. Your breast reconstruction may be performed using breast implants or using a “flap” technique, in which donor tissues from areas such as the thighs, hips, or abdomen are used to recreate the breast. If implants are used, Dr. Ellen will also utilize tissue expanders to gradually create space for the implant by stretching the skin and tissues. Through the consultation process, Dr. Ellen can also work with the rest of your medical team to determine whether you are healthy and ready for breast reconstruction.
Recovery After Breast Reconstruction
After breast reconstruction surgery, you can expect side effects like swelling, redness, discomfort, and some bruising. Your particular experience will vary depending on the techniques used to complete your surgery, and Dr. Ellen can explain what you can expect during your consultation. You will be given pain medication to stay comfortable and should wear a supportive surgical bra to reduce swelling. On average, breast reconstruction patients will require about two weeks of downtime to rest and recover before returning to work or other normal routines.
Even as you return to your everyday routine, some side effects will remain. Residual swelling and some bruising may last up to two months, but should not be severe. Follow Dr. Ellen’s advice for returning to strenuous activity like your exercise routine. Typically, patients can return to all of their normal activities by 4-6 weeks after their surgery.
Potential Breast Reconstruction Risks
Before you choose breast reconstruction, you should be aware of any potential risks. Breast reconstruction is generally safe, but like all surgeries, there are some risks involved.
Following your surgery, you should take steps to avoid infection. Dr. Ellen will likely prescribe antibiotics, which you should take according to directions. Follow any instructions regarding caring for incision sites and bandages carefully. Infection can generally be avoided with proper aftercare.
Smokers also have increased risks when it comes to surgery. These include delayed healing, which can result in more noticeable scarring and other complications. Before you have a breast reconstruction surgery, Dr. Ellen will ask that you are a nonsmoker or quit smoking.
Capsular contracture is another delayed complication that is possible with breast implants. This occurs when the scar tissue surrounding the implant becomes hardened, putting pressure on the implant. Some signs of capsular contracture include pain or discomfort and changes in shape or the feel of your implants. In these cases, breast implants will need to be removed and replaced. Dr. Ellen will explain signs to look out for regarding capsular contracture as well as implant leaks or ruptures if you are having a breast reconstruction with implants.
Schedule a Breast Reconstruction Consultation
To learn more about breast reconstruction, schedule a consultation with Dr. Ellen Janetzke in Bloomfield Hills, MI. Call our office at (248) 220-6760 or contact us online.
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