Breast Reconstruction

HOME | BREAST RECONSTRUCTION

Breast Reconstruction Phoenix, AZ

Breast Reconstruction After Mastectomy in Phoenix, Gilbert, Mesa, Glendale, Paradise Valley, and Surrounding Arizona Areas

Breast Reconstruction is the surgical method of restoring and rebuilding a woman’s breast(s) after breast cancer. Each woman’s situation may be different so the timing of surgery may be immediate, delayed, or immediately delayed. Through helping countless women with breast reconstruction surgery in Phoenix, AZ, Dr. Tessler and Dr. Turin understand not only the physical trauma breast cancer surgery patients go through, but also the mental anguish that is associated with losing a part of the body that has been there through a woman’s entire life. Breast cancer can be a confusing and difficult time for women, but they do not have to navigate this path alone nor settle for subpar results, procedures, or surgeons. Dr. Tessler, Dr. Turin and staff are personally there for each and every one of his breast cancer reconstruction patients and their families from the first moment they reach out to him, to the first surgery, to years down the road after their life begins to feel normal again. Not only do breast cancer patients no longer have to travel this path alone, but they also have first hand access to Dr. Tessler and Dr. Turin and the most advanced breast reconstruction methods available in Phoenix, Arizona. Dr. Tessler and Dr. Turin are continuously pushing the boundaries on breast reconstruction to perfect the appearance and function of the reconstructed breast in order to always offer the latest and best breast reconstruction Phoenix, Arizona and the U.S. has to offer. Phoenix breast reconstruction patients now have access to a breast reconstruction surgeon skilled in every modality of reconstructive breast surgery.

Dr. Tessler and Dr. Turin have an extensive and proven track record of successful breast reconstructions for the women in Phoenix, Gilbert, Glendale, Paradise Valley, surrounding Arizona areas, as well as across the US. and Canada. Different breast reconstruction methods need to be used for different women, depending on a woman’s body type and level/stage of breast cancer. This is why it is important that a woman’s breast reconstruction surgeon have extensive capabilities and a proven track record of multiple different muscle sparing autologous (live tissue obtained from oneself), and implant breast reconstruction options after a mastectomy.

Dr. Tessler has published significant clinical advancements, developed innovative techniques and accumulated extensive experience in each and every one of these breast reconstruction modalities. While there are many competent breast surgeons in the Phoenix, Gilbert, Glendale, Mesa, Scottsdale, AZ area and beyond, none offer Dr. Tessler’s distinct skill set. Dr. Tessler is uniquely qualified to achieve the best possible results for his patients. 

  • Autologous (flap) breast reconstruction surgery
  • Breast implant reconstruction surgery
  • Breast revision reconstruction surgery
  • Volume Enhancing Fat Grafting to the Breast
  • Enhanced Sensation After Mastectomy and Reconstruction Surgery

Breast Reconstruction Phoenix, AZ

Breast Reconstruction After Mastectomy in Phoenix, Gilbert, Mesa, Glendale, Paradise Valley, and Surrounding Arizona Areas

Breast Reconstruction is the surgical method of restoring and rebuilding a woman’s breast(s) after breast cancer. Each woman’s situation may be different so the timing of surgery may be immediate, delayed, or immediately delayed. Through helping countless women with breast reconstruction surgery in Phoenix, AZ, Dr. Tessler and Dr. Turin understand not only the physical trauma breast cancer surgery patients go through, but also the mental anguish that is associated with losing a part of the body that has been there through a woman’s entire life. Breast cancer can be a confusing and difficult time for women, but they do not have to navigate this path alone nor settle for subpar results, procedures, or surgeons. Dr. Tessler, Dr. Turin and staff are personally there for each and every one of his breast cancer reconstruction patients and their families from the first moment they reach out to him, to the first surgery, to years down the road after their life begins to feel normal again. Not only do breast cancer patients no longer have to travel this path alone, but they also have first hand access to Dr. Tessler, Dr. Turin and the most advanced breast reconstruction methods available in Phoenix, Arizona. Dr. Tessler and Dr. Turin are continuously pushing the boundaries on breast reconstruction to perfect the appearance and function of the reconstructed breast in order to always offer the latest and best breast reconstruction Phoenix, Arizona and the U.S. has to offer. Phoenix breast reconstruction patients now have access to a breast reconstruction surgeon skilled in every modality of reconstructive breast surgery.

Dr. Tessler and Dr. Turin have an extensive and proven track record of successful breast reconstructions for the women in Phoenix, Gilbert, Glendale, Paradise Valley, surrounding Arizona areas, as well as across the US. and Canada. Different breast reconstruction methods need to be used for different women, depending on a woman’s body type and level/stage of breast cancer. This is why it is important that a woman’s breast reconstruction surgeon have extensive capabilities and a proven track record of multiple different muscle sparing autologous (live tissue obtained from oneself), and implant breast reconstruction options after a mastectomy.

Dr. Tessler has published significant clinical advancements, developed innovative techniques and accumulated extensive experience in each and every one of these breast reconstruction modalities. While there are many competent breast surgeons in the Phoenix, Gilbert, Glendale, Mesa, Scottsdale, AZ area and beyond, none offer Dr. Tessler’s distinct skill set. Dr. Tessler and Dr. Turin are uniquely qualified to achieve the best possible results for his patients. 

  • Autologous (flap) breast reconstruction surgery
  • Breast implant reconstruction surgery
  • Breast revision reconstruction surgery
  • Volume Enhancing Fat Grafting to the Breast
  • Enhanced Sensation After Mastectomy and Reconstruction Surgery

B.R.A.

Breast Reconstruction Algorithm (B.R.A.)

Dr. Tessler and Dr. Turin use this innovative Breast Reconstruction Algorithm (B.R.A.) to work with patients in creating the best possible treatment plan. During the consultation process, Dr. Tessler and Dr. Turin will review the Breast Reconstruction Algorithm (B.R.A.) with you, analyzing various factors such as: 

  • Your general health status 
  • Whether a unilateral or bilateral breast reconstruction is required
  • Your breast size
  • How much tissue you have available
  • Which area(s) of your body the tissue can be taken from
1

Health

We will assess your general health status

2

Uni or Bi

Assess whether a unilateral or bilateral reconstruction is needed for the patients desired results

3

Size

Measure your breast size and desired breast size

4

Tissue Availability

Measure how much tissue is available from your donor site(s)

5

Donor Sites

Finally assess which areas of your body can act as the donor site(s) for your new breasts

Then, drawing from his broad and extensive academic, research and professional experience, Dr. Tessler and Dr. Turin will assess every possible treatment option available including:

  • Abdominal-based perforator flaps
  • Lower extremity and trunk perforator flaps (PAP, GAP, LTP)
  • Enhanced perforator flaps (fleur-de-PAP, DIEA-DCIA flap)
  • Stacked perforator flaps
  • Breast sharing flaps
  • Breast implants
  • Fat grafting

Finally, Dr. Tessler and Dr. Turin will work with you to design your own customized treatment plan, always taking the time to provide as much information as you feel comfortable with. This may include reviewing academic papers or publications (may insert hyperlink here) that support his recommendations, a concept known as “privademics”. Dr. Tessler and Dr. Turin believe that this approach allows patients to make the most informed decisions possible about their own care. 

METHODS

Breast Reconstruction Techniques

Since the first true attempt at breast reconstruction in 1895 by Vincent Czerny, breast reconstruction has come a long way. By 1994 the first DIEP Flap was used for the purpose of breast reconstruction was described in the United States. Muscle sparing procedures, such as the DIEP Flap, are now considered the gold standard for autologous breast reconstruction. The major concept behind the DIP Flap – to use skin and fatty tissue without muscle – is now applicable to other parts of the body than just the abdomen. Therefore, women who do not have enough fat in the abdomen to rebuild their breasts, have a plethora of donor sites, implants and combination options to which Dr. Tessler specializes.

DIEP, or Deep Inferior Epigastric Artery Perforator, is the name of the blood vessel that supplies the lower portion of the belly. With a DIEP flap, a flap of fat and skin from the lower belly are transferred to the upper chest to rebuild the breast. The pattern of tissue is similar to what is removed during a traditional abdominoplasty (tummy tuck). The blood vessels from the DIEP flap are attached to the blood vessels in your chest with a microscope. Using a DIEP flap means that no muscle is used, which results in a faster recovery and is believed to lower the risk of developing weakness or a later “bulge” in the abdominal wall.

PAP, or Profunda Artery Perforator, is the name of the blood vessel that supplies the skin and fat of the inner thigh. With a PAP flap there are multiple designs that can allow Dr. Tessler to harvest the maximum amount of tissue based on the patient’s individual tissue distribution. The flap can be designed horizontally in the inguinal and gluteal creases, vertically along the midline of the inner thigh, or combined in a fleur-de-lis pattern. The final scars rest in the same lines as a medial thigh lift and the tissue pattern removed is once again similar to what would be discarded in that cosmetic procedure.

LTP or Lateral Thigh Perforator is a flap that uses tissue from the patient’s outer thigh (often referred to as the “saddlebag” area). This flap is useful when the previous designed flaps are unavailable. In general, this flap is useful in patients that have excess tissue in this area. However, the flaps are generally smaller in volume and the resultant scars can be potentially visible.

SGAP (Superior Gluteal Artery Perforator) and IGAP (Inferior Gluteal Artery Perforator Flap) are flaps that harvest tissue from the superior or inferior buttock, respectively. Like the LTP, this flap is generally reserved for situations where the most common flaps are unavailable.

The TDAP, or Thoracodorsal Artery Perforator Flap, is a flap that harvests fat and potentially skin from a patient’s back. This flap is most often reserved for revision breast reconstruction surgery and repairing contour deformities of the patient’s breasts. It provides excellent and healthy soft tissue and potentially skin, however it lacks the volume necessary to reconstruct the entire breast.

This flap is NOT a perforator flap and the vessels of this flap are not divided and then reattached to your chest vessels under a microscope. A latissimus flap uses the latissimus dorsi muscle, along with skin and fat from your mid-back, to reconstruct the breast. The latissimus dorsi muscle is a broad, flat muscle on your back (you use it when doing pull-ups). The latissimus muscle is one of many muscles that supports your shoulder girdle; therefore, it can be removed without any significant functional deficit. The rest of the muscles of your shoulder girdle take its place after it is moved. The flap is lifted from your back and turned under your arm to reconstruct your breast mound. This flap is extremely reliable and is most often used as a flap for salvaging complications. It generally requires combination with an implant or fat grafting to build the breast. This flap is useful in patients who cannot undergo or do not want to undertake a microsurgical procedure but require healthy, soft tissue in their breast.

This type of breast reconstruction can be done in one or two stages, depending on your individual anatomy. The final implant position may be above (prepectoral) or deep (subpectoral) in relation to the pectoralis major muscle. Most often, this type of reconstruction is supplemented with total envelope fat grafting in order to provide a more natural breast contour and softer feel. The preferred incision for implant-based reconstruction is in the inframmamary fold, where the scar is well-hidden under the breast. 

The SPARE procedure is a new technique in which the main nerves that supply the nipple and breast that would normally be cut during a mastectomy, are identified under magnification, tagged and protected.

Recovery

Breast Reconstruction Recovery

You’ll need to stay in the hospital for approximately 48 hours after your autologous breast reconstruction (this is a similar length of stay to implant-based reconstruction). While longer in-patient stays were once the norm for this type of surgery, we have been able to reduce the time using ERAS (Enhanced Recovery After Surgery) protocols.

Recovery from autologous breast reconstruction involves two surgical sites – the breast, and the tissue donor site. The length of recovery in terms of activity and comfort is generally dictated by the donor site. The most common donor site is the abdomen (DIEP flap), which is treated and closed in a manner similar to an abdominoplasty (tummy tuck). Thus, recovery typically takes 2-4 weeks, with increasing activity beginning at 2 weeks.

Breast Reconstruction Surgery Timeline

You’ll need to stay in the hospital for approximately 48 hours after your autologous breast reconstruction (this is a similar length of stay to implant-based reconstruction). While longer in-patient stays were once the norm for this type of surgery, we have been able to reduce the time using ERAS (Enhanced Recovery After Surgery) protocols.

F.A.Q.

Frequently Asked Questions

Breast Reconstruction Algorithm

U

What are the advantages of autologous breast reconstruction compared to implant-based surgery?

Cosmetic improvement of the breast
Patients of all ages and body types consistently report higher or similar levels of satisfaction and body image perception compared to other types of breast reconstruction.

Cosmetic improvement of the donor site
Patients are often pleased with the aesthetic appearance of the donor site as compared to before the surgery.

More natural look and feel
Because we work with your own tissue, your breasts will gain and lose weight with you, age with you, and continue to look and feel like you throughout your lifetime.

No need for breast revision surgery in the distant future
Implant-based surgery typically requires additional surgeries due to changes in the breast or the implant.

U

Implant VS Autologous Flap Reconstruction - Which looks better?

This is not always the case, but typically our patients are more pleased with the cosmetic appearance of a tissue flap (autologous) over implant based reconstruction. Patients also receive the added benefit of skin and fat reduction from “problem” areas being used as donor sites for the flap.

U

Implant VS Autologous Flap Reconstruction - Which looks better?

This is not always the case, but typically our patients are more pleased with the cosmetic appearance of a tissue flap (autologous) over implant based reconstruction. Patients also receive the added benefit of skin and fat reduction from “problem” areas being used as donor sites for the flap.