This 37-year-old patient from Los Angeles, CA desired smaller breasts to compliment her lifestyle…
Every woman who has had a mastectomy has a right to love her results and feel comfortable naked. Unfortunately, this is not the case for most patients. With traditional mastectomy reconstruction, the implants are often easy to feel, asymmetric, cold, and uncomfortable. When only one breast is removed, dissimilarities between the breast that is reconstructed and the remaining breast may be obvious right away, or may develop over time. Patients who have had previous breast cancer reconstruction surgeries can improve their results with breast reconstruction revision at Beverly Hills’ Cassileth Plastic Surgery.
Dr. Lisa Cassileth and Dr. Kelly Killeen employ advanced surgical techniques with artistry to make major improvements to unacceptable results from prior surgeries. Breast reconstruction revision can help breast cancer patients feel comfortable and normal again—even when they have been told there are no more options.
Breast Reconstruction Revision Before & Afters
What can breast reconstruction revision address?
If a mastectomy is only performed on one side, the newly constructed breast often sits higher and appears less natural than the remaining side. Our approach is to make the reconstructed side appear more natural by adding fat grafting and adjusting the implant capsule as needed to allow better symmetry. In contrast, the natural side is altered to look higher and fuller. Fat transfer as a part of breast reconstruction revision adds natural volume to the reconstructed side, creating a smooth, fatty, soft, warm layer that blends with the body. The real side also frequently needs a breast lift and augmentation with an implant in order to look as close to a young breast as possible.
Adjusting the reconstructed side to make it look more natural and making the side with the original breast look more “fake” improves the symmetry. This breast reconstruction revision strategy also creates results that last longer, since breasts that each contain both fat and implants will age similarly.
A capsule of scar tissue can sometimes form around a breast implant during the healing process. If this capsule is thick or tight enough, it can cause the overall breast to feel hard as it actually squeezes and constricts the implant. This is called capsular contracture, and severe cases can be painful and create a misshapen look.
Completely removing the capsule via a breast reconstruction revision procedure called a capsulectomy corrects the problem. This process involves removing the implant itself from the breast pocket and excising the complete capsule, called a capsulectomy. Placing acellular dermal matrix in the newly “cleaned out” pocket creates a natural-looking support structure—like a soft, internal bra. This allows the implant to sit in its intended shape and minimizes the formation of new scar tissue after the breast reconstruction revision surgery.
A common post-mastectomy reconstruction outcome is a breast with an unsupported and visible implant, which can feel heavy as gravity pulls at it. A low-hanging implant can shift the breast to the side when a woman lies down, even going so far as sliding into the armpit. In cases with bilateral implants, the distance between them can be noticeably wide, creating a hollow-looking upper chest. Often, these patients have visible implants and rippling.
To fix the problem of unsupported implants during breast reconstruction revision, Dr. Cassileth and Dr. Killeen create an internal bra to hold the implants higher on the chest wall. Using cohesive gel implants can minimize the potential for future rippling. Also, adding harvested fat above and between the breasts during breast reconstruction revision gives the area a full and natural appearance.