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Breast reconstruction restores what cancer took away and can help you feel confident and feminine after undergoing breast cancer surgery. Dr. Courtney is a skilled plastic surgeon and a leader in the field of breast reconstruction. He loves assisting women in restoring feelings of confidence and femininity, especially those affected by breast cancer or who have elected to undergo preventative breast surgery.

Why choose Dr. Courtney for breast reconstruction?

Dr. Courtney is among the most talented breast reconstruction surgeons practicing in Houston or the nation. He is personally dedicated to creating natural-looking, beautiful results, and his warmth and compassion make the journey less stressful and far more positive. As a microsurgeon, he offers advanced skills for reconstruction with natural tissue. He has been nationally-recognized as just one of six outstanding surgeons for his research by The American Society of Plastic Surgery.

Dr. Courtney’s relaxed and approachable personality is an essential aspect of treatment under his care. His detailed and personalized results in breast reconstruction reflect the dedication he feels to women who are recovering from breast cancer and his focus on ensuring you feel sexy and confident when at the end of the process.

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The benefits of breast reconstruction

Breast reconstruction is a highly personal decision, and it isn’t right for everyone. However, if you want to restore natural-looking breasts after cancer treatment, this procedure can be a critical part of a full recovery. Some benefits of breast reconstruction include:

  • Increased confidence after a mastectomy
  • Breasts that look and feel natural
  • A natural, sculpted figure
  • Increased feelings of femininity
  • Restored feelings of feminine sexuality after cancer treatment

Studies show that breast reconstruction often improves the quality of life after breast cancer treatments.

Types of breast reconstruction surgeries

There are several different options for reconstructing the breasts. The procedure that is best for your body will reflect the type of cancer treatment, the size of your natural breasts, your body type and shape, previous surgical history, and personal preference. Some patients will receive a combination approach that combines both autologous tissue flaps and implants. Dr. Courtney can help you weigh these variables and choose an effective reconstruction solution.

Autologous reconstruction

Autologous reconstruction uses your own natural body tissues (skin, fat, or muscle) to rebuild the breast mound. There are several types of autologous reconstruction, including:

  • Deep inferior epigastric perforator flap (DIEP)
  • Profunda artery perforator flap (PAP)
  • Superficial inferior epigastric artery flap (SIEA)
  • Gluteal artery flap (GAP)

In autologous reconstruction, there are two surgical sites: the donor site where the tissues are harvested and the breast area.

Some donor sites, specifically the abdominal area for DIEP or SIEA flap procedures, are aesthetically enhanced by the surgery. DIEP flap reconstruction is popular because of its ability to restore the breasts while creating a tighter, flatter abdominal appearance.

Flap reconstruction is complex and may require an extended recovery period. Most patients will need to spend several days in the hospital after surgery. After this initial recovery period, many women enjoy long-lasting results that require very little maintenance.

Implant reconstruction

Implant reconstruction uses saline or silicone breast implants to rebuild the breasts. Breast reconstruction using implants may be the only reconstruction available to patients with a lean physique and minimal excess tissue.

  • Direct to implant:  Some patients can have implants placed immediately after the mastectomy, which is called the direct to implant technique. Breast tissue is removed, and the implants are placed in the same surgical appointment.
  • Tissue expander: Some patients will receive a tissue expander during their mastectomy. This expander allows the skin to be readied for placing an implant after cancer treatments are complete. Tissue expanders work on stretching skin, muscle, and tissue to accommodate a larger implant size. Expanders are slowly inflated with saline. These are removed and replaced by saline or silicone implants at a later time.

Implant reconstruction has a shorter initial recovery period, but additional surgeries may be needed to replace implants or expanders.

Immediate vs. delayed reconstruction

Reconstruction can be performed immediately after mastectomy or may be delayed to allow for additional therapies and treatments to be complete.

Immediate Reconstruction

Immediate reconstruction is performed at the same time as the mastectomy. Immediate reconstruction may not be possible in patients that need additional treatments after surgery. We can work with your medical team and cancer surgeon to find out if immediate reconstruction is a possibility.

Delayed Reconstruction

Delayed reconstruction is performed in a separate surgery, after a mastectomy, typically when your cancer treatments are completed. Some women that initially opted not to undergo breast reconstruction choose delayed reconstruction many years after a mastectomy. Even if it has been many years since your breast cancer surgery, delayed reconstruction may be a possibility.

Both immediate and delayed reconstruction have benefits. Talk with Dr. Courtney to find out which options are available to you.

FAQ:

Breast reconstruction in Houston

How many surgeries will I need for breast reconstruction?

Breast reconstruction is a process that may require multiple surgeries to achieve ideal results. The total number of surgeries needed will depend on many factors. Talk with Dr. Courtney to find out how many surgeries are required for your reconstruction.

What type of breast reconstruction is best for me?

Several breast reconstruction surgical options available, with effective techniques available for most women. Many factors go into the reconstruction decision, and Dr. Courtney will help you weigh the pros and cons of each choice. You didn’t choose to have cancer – but you will take part in the decisions about what type of reconstruction will bring you the results you envision for your body.

Will chemotherapy or radiation affect my breast reconstruction results?

Chemotherapy, radiation, and other cancer treatments can affect breast reconstruction results. Talk with your medical team about which treatments you will need and how they could impact your results. We can help minimize the impact of cancer treatments by choosing the reconstruction options best suited to your treatment plan.

Will insurance cover my breast reconstruction?

Your health insurance typically covers breast reconstruction and revision surgeries. Call Dr. Courtney’s office for help and more information. Most insurance policies cover reconstruction, even many years after cancer, and treatments on the opposite breast for symmetry.

Will I need surgery on the other breast too?

Surgery is typically performed on both breasts, the one affected by cancer and the healthy breast, to maintain or create symmetry.

Meet with us

Explore your options for breast reconstruction in Houston, TX, in consultation with plastic surgeon Dr. Courtney. We love helping women find a new normal after cancer by providing them with confidence in their post-treatment appearance. Contact us to schedule a consultation or learn more.

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