Breast Reconstruction New York City
Introduction to Breast Reconstruction
Restoration & Rejuvenation
Survivor. Fighter. Thriver. There are many synonyms for the many women who were once afflicted with the dreaded disease of cancer but have successfully beaten it into submission. Defeating cancer is admirable in and of itself, but the emotional or physical trauma of the experience is something that often gets overlooked. In addition to the toll it takes on the mind, the body is affected in more ways than one. Most former cancer patients require a mastectomy to excise the cancerous tissue, which removes the potentially deadly tumor but also one or both breasts. William Samson, MD strives to provide these strong women with the best Breast Reconstruction results in NYC. Our team wants to help you regain your confidence and feel comfortable and sexy in your body once again. If you would like to know more about this life-changing procedure, please keep reading below.
Before & After
Let’s start with the basics
What is Breast Reconstruction?
Breast Reconstruction is a surgery that helps to restore one or both breasts to their near-normal shape, appearance, symmetry, and size following mastectomy, lumpectomy, or congenital deformities.
Many breast reconstruction surgeries often involve multiple procedures performed in stages and can either begin at the time of mastectomy or be delayed until a later date. Immediate Reconstruction is performed at the same time as the mastectomy, while Delayed Reconstruction is done after recovery from the mastectomy. In some cases, radiation therapy is part of the treatment plan and during these situations, Dr. Samson typically advises waiting until after you are finished with radiation.
Breast reconstruction also generally falls into two categories: implant-based reconstruction or flap reconstruction, also called autologous reconstruction. Implant Reconstruction relies on breast implants to help form a new breast mound while Flap Reconstruction uses the patient’s tissue from another part of the body to form a new breast.
Dr. Samson will consider a number of factors when choosing which option is best:
- Type of mastectomy
- Cancer treatments
- Patient’s body type
- A note about symmetry
If you’ve only had one breast affected, it may be reconstructed by itself, but other breast procedures, such as a breast lift, breast reduction, or breast augmentation may be recommended for the opposite breast to improve symmetry of the size, shape, and position of both breasts.
When considering breast reconstruction, it is very important to keep the following things in mind:
- A reconstructed breast does not have the same sensation or feel as the original, replaced breast
- Visible incision lines will always be present on the breast, whether from reconstruction or mastectomy
- While less exposed, certain surgical techniques will leave incision lines at the donor site, (such as the back, abdomen, or buttocks)
What are the Benefits of Breast Reconstruction?
Our Breast Reconstruction patients in NYC have found the following benefits from their surgery:
- Creates balance and proportion back to a woman’s body
- Has many customizable options to meet unique needs
- Provides dramatic results
- Restores a sense of self-confidence and self-esteem
What to expect on the day of surgery
On the day of your Breast Reconstruction, you will begin by being administered either general anesthesia or intravenous sedation to make your surgery more comfortable. Once you are sedated, Dr. Samson will begin.
There are 2 main types of reconstruction surgery that Dr. Samson may perform, Expander-Implant or Autologous Tissue.
The expander-impact surgery uses an expander to create the breast mound – think of a water balloon that slowly gets filled with saline. If this is not a permanent solution, you will need a second surgery to remove the expander.
Expanders are empty silicone “pockets” that are placed under the pectoralis, the muscle between the breast and the chest wall. It is then filled with saline solution over several weeks to enable the skin and soft tissues of the breast to stretch using an internal valve or port in the expander. Another option is filling the expander with air over 2 or 3 weeks.
When the expander has been filled, it could be left in for several more weeks to months, allowing for maximum skin and soft tissue growth. A second surgery may be needed to remove the tissue expander once the skin has stretched enough and a permanent implant is inserted beneath your muscle and skin, but in some situations, the expander is just left in place.
The implants are filled with saline or silicone gel and are put under the breast tissue to form the shape of the breast. Dr. Samson will discuss the types of implants with you and help you decide which type to use as each type of implant has its advantages and disadvantages
With autologous tissue, Dr. Samson uses your body tissues to reconstruct a new breast mound. Keep in mind that this type of reconstruction surgery will leave you with 2 surgical wounds that will need to be treated, one on your chest and the other at the site where the tissue was removed.
There are different ways to do this surgery:
TRAM (transverse rectus abdominous muscle) flap: The most common method, an area of fat, skin, and muscle is removed from your abdomen and moved to the chest. This surgery also involves a tummy tuck. The TRAM flaps can change as you gain and lose weight and it’s important to realize that removing stomach muscle can increase stress on the back, putting you at a greater risk of developing a hernia. A horizontal scar will be left across the lower abdomen as well as on your chest.
DIEP (deep inferior epigastric perforator) flap: Dr. Samson will take fat and skin (but not muscle) from your lower belly and moves them to the chest. This surgery is otherwise similar to the TRAM flap in that it also gives you a tummy tuck, and your scarring will be similar.
Gluteal free flap: Considered to be a more complex surgery, part of the skin, muscle, and fat is removed from your buttocks and grafted onto the chest.
Latissimus dorsi flap: This technique will move muscle, fat, blood vessels, and skin from your upper back to your chest. Oftentimes, you will also need an implant to provide a better appearance.
TUG (transverse upper gracilis) flap: If this method is used, muscle and fat are taken from the upper and/or inner thigh and then moved to the chest.
What’s the First Step?
If you are in the NYC area and would like to learn more about Breast Reconstruction, the first step is to contact the office of William Samson, MD, and schedule your consultation. During this appointment, you will meet with Dr. Samson and discuss your medical history as well as what you’re looking to achieve throughout the procedure. Your breasts will be examined and depending on what technique is settled on, you may also need to pick out the size and shape of implant you would like to have. When he has all the information he needs, Dr. Samson will create your procedure plan. If you agree with this plan, you will schedule your surgery date with our Patient Coordinator.
*Please remember that when discussing your medical history, it is very important to be open and honest. The more factual information that Dr. Samson has, the better chance you have of a successful surgery and recovery with minimal risks.
Who are the Best Candidates for Breast Reconstruction?
William Samson, MD feels the best candidates for Breast Reconstruction in New York City are women who:
- Can cope well with your diagnosis and treatment
- Do not have additional medical conditions or other illnesses that may impair healing
- Have a positive outlook and realistic goals for restoring your breast and body image
- Should have a BMI of less than 30 (does not exclude you if this is not your situation)
Breast Reconstruction Recovery
After you are discharged by Dr. Samson, you will be able to return home, but you should have a family member or friend ready to give you a ride. You will have gauze or a bandage wrapped around your incision which will need to remain on until you see Dr. Samson again for your first check-up, as it will add protection for your incisions and aid in preventing infection. You will also need to wear an elastic bandage or sports bra to provide additional support for your reconstructed breast, as well as minimize swelling. Dr. Samson may also temporarily leave a cannula (a small, thin tube) inserted into one of your incisions to help drain excess fluid or blood that collects.
You will be provided with instructions that will inform you how to treat your incisions and how to responsibly take your medication to ease your discomfort during recovery and prevent infection. Over the next few months, the swelling will decrease as your breasts settle into shape. It could take around 6 weeks or more before you can resume light exercise.
If you are having Immediate reconstruction surgery after your mastectomy, you should expect to have a longer recovery time than if you got a delayed reconstruction. Patients who get autologous tissue surgery will be required to care for a second surgery site as it heals. It’s important to know that it can take up to 2 months before the final results of breast reconstruction can be seen. Be patient as your body heals.
How Much Does Breast Reconstruction Cost in New York City?
The cost of Breast Reconstruction in New York City is based on a multitude of factors, including the amount of reconstruction required and the techniques used to perform the procedure. After you have come in for your consultation and discussed your plan with Dr. Samson, you will be given a price breakdown from our Patient Coordinator.
While we can not guarantee it, many insurance providers do help pay for a portion if not all of a Breast Reconstruction. We highly recommend contacting your provider before coming in and finding out for yourself what you can expect to be responsible for.
Why choose us?
Breast Reconstruction Expert
If you are in the New York City area and are looking for Breast Reconstruction, look no further than Dr. William Samson. As a board-certified plastic surgeon for over 10 years, Dr. Samson has a history of helping those who are breast cancer thrivers. He completed a year’s fellowship in Microsurgery and Breast Cancer Reconstructive Surgery at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Because of his experience and successes in plastic surgery, Castle Connolly has even awarded him the NYC TopDoc award.
Schedule a Consultation
If you are in the NYC area and have had a mastectomy, in the past or recently, Breast Reconstruction by William Samson, MD could be very beneficial in helping you feel complete again. If you are interested in the procedure and would like to see if you are a good candidate, please call us at 212-590-5580 or request an appointment through our website and a team member will be in touch with you. You’ve already struggled with breast cancer and won, there’s no need to struggle with confidence in your appearance, let us help you feel whole again. Contact us today for your consultation!
Breast Reconstruction FAQs
Is Breast Reconstruction painful?
How many appointments will I need?
How long until I see results?
Can I combine Breast Reconstruction with other procedures?
What are the risks associated with Breast Reconstruction?
- Blood clots
- Excessive scar tissue
- Fluid collection in the surgical area (seroma)
- Problems with the breast implant
- Problems with the sleep medicines (anesthesia) used during surgery
Dr. Samson is amazing! I lost about 100 pounds and over the past year he has performed 3 surgical procedures to remove excess skin and transform my body!
I opted to have a breast reduction 5 months ago with Dr. Samson and I must say the results and experience have been amazing.
Dr. Samson and his team treat patients with deep respect, thoughtfulness, honesty, attention to detail and great skill, all combined leading to excellent results.
We’re here to help, with a number of patient resources designed to make your experience as comfortable as possible. Read through the materials below, and don’t hesitate to reach out and set up your consultation to learn more about what we can do for you.