Why Natural Tissue Breast Reconstruction is Recommended after Radiation or Failed Implants:
Most women in the United States and around the world who receive breast reconstruction have implant reconstruction procedures. This is a very common operation because it is very easy to perform and has a relatively quick recovery. However, implants do not last forever and typically require multiple operations.
Secondly and most importantly, implants have a failure rate of 39% at 7 years with a higher complication rate in patients requiring radiation.
The breast implant problems include, but are not limited to:
- outright failure
- chronic pain
- capsular contracture
- feeling of heaviness, discomfort on hugging or lying on one’s abdomen
- feeling of cold
Natural Breast Reconstruction after Failed Implants
These problems are extremely common. Almost everyone who has these problems is a candidate for the use of their own warm, soft and natural body tissue (autologous) to permanently and effectively replace their implants. Even thin women, or women who have had multiple surgeries in the past and thought implants were their only option, can be excellent candidates for the replacement of their failed implants. In using the body’s own natural tissue, the results are a more natural, soft and normal looking and feeling breast reconstruction.
Natural Breast Reconstruction after Radiation Therapy
Since implant reconstruction with radiation therapy has a high complication rate, breast reconstruction after radiation with natural tissue is usually recommended in these cases. Tissue expanders can be used as temporary place-holders during radiation therapy so the definitive autologous reconstruction can be performed safely after radiation.