If you have had radiation to treat your breast cancer, you may be wondering if you are a candidate for breast reconstruction using breast implants. The American Society of Plastic Surgeons recognizes that implant-based breast reconstruction is possible for women who have had radiation treatment; however they caution that radiation prior to breast implants may cause additional complications.
Dr. Comizio always cautions her patients considering breast implants after radiation about the following potential side effects they may encounter:
- Potential for less desirable aesthetic results
- Higher risk of capsular contracture
- Higher risk of reoperation for breast reconstruction revision
Ultimately, the decision on which breast reconstruction option to use is dependent on each unique situation and a thorough conversation with Dr. Comizio during an initial breast reconstruction consultation. While new techniques are making it easier for women who have had radiation to have breast reconstruction with breast implants, Dr. Comizo’s thorough examination and discussion with a patient will outline the potential risks of reconstructing breasts with implants after radiation treatment.
An alternative to breast reconstruction with implants is autologous surgery. This procedure uses your own donor tissue, typically harvested from the stomach or back, to reconstruct the breasts using your own body tissue. Some women who have had radiation may be better candidates for this type of breast reconstruction. Choosing this option could result in longer surgical and recovery time.
If you’ve had radiation, it’s important to discuss all your breast reconstruction options with Dr. Comizio so you can make the most informed, educated decision about your surgery selection. Dr. Comizio’s years of experience helping hundreds of patients and will guide the conversation about your options.
To schedule a consultation with Dr. Comizio, simply call (973) 775-9248.