Breast Cancer Reconstruction

Nancy Van Laeken MD, FRCSC, discusses breast cancer reconstruction.

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Nancy Van Laeken MD, FRCSC, discusses breast cancer reconstruction.
Video transcript

Featuring Dr. Nancy Van Laeken, MD, FRCSC

Duration: 1 minute, 36 seconds

If a patient is interested in pursuing what the autologous options are then they will find out about the different techniques available. So autologous can mean tissue from the abdomen, tissue from the back, or tissue from the buttock.

These procedures are done either with a microscope where the tissue is transferred free or they are done as pedicale flaps. The type of operation that that patient is more suitable for will be dependent on a number of medical factors including your height and weight and for further details on that they should speak to the plastic surgeon who would be involved in doing that operation.

If the patient has been determined to be a good candidate for an implant reconstruction, then they will be made aware that it can be done one of two ways. The permanent implant can be placed the day of the mastectomy and this would be done using a dermal matrix to help support the implant.

If that is not appropriate for the patient, then they will have a two-staged operation where a tissue expander is put in the day of the mastectomy. They will have the tissue expanded over a series of weeks and ultimately have a final implant put in several months later.

The timing of these procedures will be dependent on the need for chemotherapy or radiation therapy and the size of the breast that the patient is trying to have recreated.

If you have more questions about having breast reconstruction using your own tissue, i.e., the autologous reconstruction then ask your family physician for a referral to a plastic surgeon.   

Presenter: Dr. Nancy Van Laeken, Plastic Surgeon, Vancouver, BC

Local Practitioners: Plastic Surgeon

This content is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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