Pectoral Reconstruction

Have you been diagnosed with breast cancer, or recently undergone a mastectomy? If so, you may now be ready to hear about your treatment options when it comes to breast reconstruction. We know that this is a very personal decision to make, and our breast surgeon team is here to address any questions or concerns you might have about breast reconstruction.

While there are several breast reconstruction options, pre-pectoral breast reconstruction is gaining popularity because it places the implant over rather than under the pectoral muscle, unlike many traditional implant-based breast reconstruction methods.

Why is this beneficial? 

Some women report tightness, pulling or discomfort in the chest area with implants that are placed under the pectoral muscle. Over time, changes to the muscles can occur that can make breasts spread apart, making them appear wider. To prevent these issues from occurring in the first place, our team of plastic surgeons offers pre-pectoral breast reconstruction.

Naturally, the pectoral muscle is supposed to lie flat against the wall of the chest. When an implant is placed under it this can cause the muscle to alter its shape in such a way as to cause chronic discomfort; however, when a gel implant is placed over the muscle where breast tissue naturally lies, the implant feels more natural and more comfortable.

The ideal candidates for pre-pectoral breast reconstruction are women who are in good shape and have small or medium-sized breasts. Good candidates for this type of reconstructive surgery also will not have had breast cancer removed from the nipple region. This is also a great option for women who are unable to undergo breast reconstruction with their own breast tissue.

Some of the benefits of pre-pectoral breast reconstruction are that the recovery is easier and that there is less discomfort than there can be with traditional breast reconstruction. Plus, small incisions are made to the underside of the breasts, so you won’t notice the scars (the scars will also fade over the years). There is also a very small chance that pre-pectoral implants will rotate, move around or rupture, as compared to other types of implants. Most gel implants last an average of 10 to 15 years before needing to be replaced.

If you want to learn more about getting pre-pectoral breast reconstruction and whether it’s right for you then call Constructive Plastic Surgery in Trumbull, CT and Garden City, NY today.

Placement of implants in the pre-pectoral position is a new muscle sparing procedure, which avoids long term pain, tightness and motion deformities.  Traditionally the patient's pectoral muscle as well as muscle fascia from the rectus and  serratus muscle were lifted off the chest wall and used to cover a tissue expander. The coverage achieved by this procedure is very tight and results in a painful and lengthy expansion process. in a secondary surgery the expander is removed and an implant placed into the space created by the expander. Because the pectoral muscle is overlying the upper pole of the implant any movement of the muscle will lead to implant movement as well. This condition can be painful and embarrassing. With the invention of acellular dermal matrixes - i.e. sheets of collagen derived from animal or human skin we are now able to place an implant into the mastectomy defect at the  time of the mastectomy and secure the implant in place by sewing the collagen sheet around the implant down to the chest wall.

This new procedure avoids  painful tissue expansion, motion artifacts and long term pain as well as interference with the patient's hobbies and exercise regiments by keeping chest wall muscles untouched and intact.  Complication rates are low and patient satisfaction rates are high. 

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