Vida Bela Plastic Surgery
Chelsea Snider, MD
Plastic & Reconstructive Surgeon located in Plano, TX
When you need surgery following breast cancer, Chelsea Snider, MD, at Vida Bela Plastic Surgery walks with you every step of the way, developing an individualized plan for breast reconstruction that reflects your emotional, mental, interpersonal, and physical needs. Dr. Snider will offer several reconstructive options, including the use of your own tissue, and works closely with your breast surgeon, radiologist, and oncologist to ensure you receive comprehensive multidisciplinary care. Call the office in Plano, Texas, or use the online booking feature to schedule a consultation before your breast cancer surgery.
Breast Reconstruction Q & A
What is breast reconstruction?
Breast reconstruction is surgery to rebuild or restore your breasts back to their normal shape and size. Dr. Snider often performs breast reconstruction for women following a lumpectomy or mastectomy for the treatment of breast cancer.
In addition to restoring your breast after cancer, breast reconstruction may be needed for several other health issues that affect the shape of your breasts.
For example, you may have a benign mass or cyst removed or have a congenital abnormality such as tuberous breast deformity. Your breast shape can also change following an infection, radiation, or a traumatic injury.
What is oncoplastic breast reduction?
Oncoplastic breast reduction takes place immediately after a lumpectomy to remove a malignant breast tumor.
As soon as the tumor is removed, Dr. Snider performs a breast reduction on the other side and ensures both breasts are the same size and shape. In some cases, she may also perform a breast lift if it’s needed for breast symmetry.
What is breast microsurgery?
Reconstructive microsurgery is a highly specialized procedure that uses operating microscopes and precision instruments to repair blood vessels and nerves.
Dr. Snider performs breast microsurgery when reconstructing your breasts by transferring live tissues from another part of your body, a procedure called autologous breast reconstruction.
One of the most common types of autologous breast reconstruction is a technique called a DIEP flap. During this procedure, Dr. Snider takes skin and fat from your abdomen, precisely connects blood vessels from the abdominal tissue to those in your chest, and then contours the fat to create your ideal breasts.
How is breast reconstruction performed?
Dr. Snider may perform breast reconstruction using one of three procedures:
Dr. Snider can reconstruct your breast using implants. She may place the implant immediately after your mastectomy or use a two-stage approach.
During a two-stage procedure, she places a tissue expander in the breast right after your mastectomy. Over the next few months, the expander is inflated, gradually stretching the tissues to create a pocket for the implant. Then you’ll have a second surgery to insert the implant.
Autologous reconstruction uses skin flaps taken from another part of your body to rebuild your breast. Your skin flaps may come from several areas, including your abdomen, hips, thighs, and buttocks. For example, the tissue normally discarded during a tummy tuck can be used to reconstruct a woman’s breast using the DIEP flap technique.
The flaps contain skin, fat, and sometimes muscle, along with nerves and blood vessels. Dr. Snider performs microsurgery to carefully reconnect the nerves and blood vessels to those in your chest. Then she sculpts and contours the flaps to create a new breast.
This procedure combines an autologous transplant with an implant.
If your nipple was removed during breast cancer surgery, Dr. Snider can restore your appearance by creating a new nipple. She may rearrange the existing skin to form the shape of a nipple or graft a small amount of tissue from another area of your body. After the nipple heals, the area is tattooed to add color and create the areola.
To learn more about breast reconstruction, call Vida Bela Plastic Surgery or book a consultation online.