Breast Reconstruction

Breast reconstruction surgery uses breast implants or natural body tissue to restore shape and volume to the breast area following a mastectomy or lumpectomy. While it is often the best option for your health, losing one or both breasts can be devastating. Barrett Plastic Surgery is here to help you reclaim your confidence and sense of self. 

Breast Reconstruction & Insurance

Whether your reconstruction is performed immediately after your mastectomy or years later, it will likely be covered by your health insurance. The 1998 Women’s Health and Cancer Rights Act requires all group health plans that pay for mastectomy and cover prostheses and reconstructive procedures. This includes procedures that may be needed further down the line to revise and refine your reconstructed breasts, or to create symmetry and balance between your breasts. We encourage all potential breast reduction patients to contact their health insurance companies to understand their guidelines for coverage before their initial consultation. 


Before surgery

Breast reconstruction surgery is a versatile procedure that can be customized to each patient's needs, body shape, and aesthetic goals. During your initial consultation, your surgeon will perform an extensive exam and take time to understand your goals and your complete medical history to help determine the correct type of procedure that will be the safest and most effective for you. You will then be matched with a surgical coordinator who will walk you through each step of the preoperative process.

Stop smoking
Fill prescriptions
Stop taking medications and supplements that exacerbate bleeding
Plan time away from work, childcare, and pet care for recovery
Find a family member or friend to bring you home and assist you after surgery

During surgery

Breast reconstructive surgeries vary. The three main approaches include:

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Breast Reconstruction

Breast Reconstruction with Implants: Implants are a safe and effective way to restore the breasts' volume, shape, and definition. They are most frequently used for breast augmentation to create a rounder, fuller, and perkier breast shape. Implants come in various shapes, sizes, and materials, making them highly customizable to your aesthetic goals and unique figure. This procedure is an excellent option for women who have undergone a double mastectomy, as it can help to restore symmetry and balance between the breasts. It is also suitable for those who do not have enough body tissue for a tissue transfer reconstruction. 

Breast Reconstruction with Autologous Tissue: Autologous tissue transfer is a common choice among women seeking to recreate the most natural-looking and feeling breasts. It involves using your natural tissue from an area of your body with excess fat and attaching it to your breast area to restore volume. This procedure can be performed in various ways depending on the selected donor site, commonly the abdomen, thighs, or buttocks. The process is similar, however, where a piece of muscle, fat, and skin is removed from the donor site and reattached to the chest to recreate the breasts. Since this reconstruction method uses your own tissue, your breasts will look and feel like they belong naturally to your body. They will also age with the rest of your body, leaving a lower risk of complications.

Breast Reconstruction with Fat Grafting: Fat grafting is often used in combination with other reconstruction methods to provide a more natural finish to your breasts. It is similar to a tissue transfer in that it uses unwanted excess fat from another body region to restore volume to the chest. While an autologous transfer involves surgically attaching a substantial amount of fat to recreate the roundness and fullness of the breast, fat grafting involves injecting smaller amounts of tissue into more targeted, localized areas. Alternatively, you may combine fat grafting with breast implants to achieve shape and volume while refining the area with a natural touch and finish. 

virtual consultation
Surgery duration

After surgery

It is normal to experience soreness and swelling for the first two weeks following breast reconstruction. Pain relievers and cold compresses are typically used to ease these side effects during the early portion of the recovery process. Some revisions require extensive pocket repair that involves wearing a special post-op bra.

Your surgeon will provide specific instructions for optimal post-operative care, including an advanced scar management protocol after the initial healing period. Your surgical team is always available and will closely monitor your recovery in the weeks and months following surgery.

Immediate Recovery Period
5 days
Final Results
6 months