Breast Implants and Tissue Expanders
If you have enough breast skin remaining after mastectomy (nipple sparing or subcutaneous mastectomy), single stage implant only reconstruction is possible, i.e. your procedure may be completed in one step. In this situation, a board certified plastic surgeon, could place either a saline or silicone implant under the pectoralis musclethe same day as the mastectomy. However, if there is not sufficient breast skin (skin sparing or modified radical mastectomy), you may require the initial placement of a tissue expander.
A tissue expander is an implant similar to a balloon. It is placed under the remaining breast skin and thepectoralis muscle in order to “grow” more skin so that it will accommodate the soft full permanent breast implant. The tissue expander has a valve which allows for intermittent injection of saline into the expander overtime . As the expander grows, the body responds by making more skin to accommodate it. Once the tissue expansion process is complete, Dr. Gayoso will perform a same day surgery to remove the expander and place the breast implant.
Expander implant technique can be performed immediately after mastectomy or on a delayed basis after other cancer treatments are finished.
A later office procedure allows for the creation of the nipple (except in nipple sparing mastectomy where the nipple is not removed), and subsequent tattooing of the areola. This completes the breast reconstruction.