Reconstruction after breast-conserving surgery
Some women do not need a complete mastectomy and it is considered sufficient to remove the part of the breast where the tumour is located using a lumpectomy. There are options available.
Quadrantectomy and mini flap reconstruction. In a quadrantectomy the surgeon will remove about a quarter of the breast tissue, which can leave the patient with a noticeably smaller breast. To fill the gap, living tissue can be taken from elsewhere in the body, often from the patient’s back.
Reshaping. This is also known as therapeutic mammoplasty and is more suitable for women with larger breasts. The doctor will remove the part of the breast where the cancer is located and then reshape the remaining breast tissue, so that the breast is smaller, but fully formed.
Nipple and areola reconstruction is usually done 3-4 months after the original procedure, so that the breast has had time to heal. Tattooing is used to match the colour.
Some women choose to have surgery on their healthy breast, to make both sides match. This is a matter of personal choice and something to discuss with your doctor when considering options.