American Society of Plastic Surgeons
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Breast Reconstruction

Know Your Post-Mastectomy Options

Breast reconstruction is achieved through several plastic surgery techniques that attempt to restore a breast to near normal shape, appearance and size following mastectomy.

Breast reconstruction candidates

Breast reconstruction is a highly individualized procedure. You should do it for yourself, not to fulfill someone else's desires or to try to fit any sort of ideal image.

You may be a candidate for breast reconstruction if:

  • You are able to cope well with your diagnosis and treatment
  • You do not have additional medical conditions or other illnesses that may impair healing
  • You have a positive outlook and realistic goals for restoring your breast and body image

Although breast reconstruction can rebuild your breast, the results are highly variable:

  • A reconstructed breast will not have the same sensation or feel as the breast it replaces
  • Visible incision lines will always be present on the breast, whether from reconstruction or mastectomy
  • Certain surgical techniques will leave incision lines at the donor site, commonly located in less exposed areas of the body such as the back, abdomen or buttocks


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