In many cases of breast cancer, partial or total removal of the breasts may be recommended as part of breast cancer treatment. This procedure is called a mastectomy.

Following a mastectomy, another procedure, breast reconstruction, can take place immediately or in a delayed fashion to lessen the psychological impact of the mastectomy.

Breast Reconstruction vs Breast Augmentation Surgery
Breast reconstruction surgery differs from breast augmentation surgery, mainly due to why the procedures are sought after.

In breast augmentation, implants are used to enhance the size of the natural breasts in women who desire a more voluptuous silhouette, whereas, in breast reconstruction, the breast is reshaped or restored after removal of breast tissue for cancer.

Options for Breast Reconstruction
Patients can choose from these two main breast reconstruction options – implants (saline or silicone) or autologous tissue (using the patient’s own tissue from another part of the body).

There are cases in which the surgeon may use a combination of these two techniques to create a more natural look.

Why it’s done
Many women grieve the loss of their breasts after a mastectomy or suffer from self-image issues. Breast reconstruction surgery may not totally solve it, but it can help alleviate the feelings of loss or severe anxiety that comes from losing one’s breasts.

Factors to consider
Deciding to undergo breast reconstruction is just one of the initial steps of the process.

Following that, there are other important decisions to be made, including the type of surgery to have, when to have it, and whether to do it on both breasts.

To help the patient decide, the breast and plastic surgeons will work together to consider different factors such as your body type, overall health, location and severity of cancer, other cancer treatments you may have had or still need to get, and the number of surgeries one is willing to undergo (typically, multiple surgeries are necessary to complete the reconstructive process).

Breast reconstruction is a major surgery that may require an overnight hospital stay. This will be determined by your surgeon.
After the surgery, it may take 4-6 weeks before you can return to your normal/regular activities. While it may seem like a prolonged process, the psychological one’s breast(s) after mastectomy can last longer than this.

Dr. David Lo of Premier Surgical Plastic Surgery in Knoxville specializes in breast reconstruction. Dr. Lo and his team will educate you and help you select the reconstruction option that’s best for you.

To request an appointment with Dr. Lo, please call Premier Surgical Plastic Surgery at (865) 306-5680 or visit