The latissimus based breast reconstruction involves taking muscle and tissue from the back and moving it to the breast to help reform and reshape the breast following a mastectomy or injury. The result is a more natural looking and feeling breast.
This method may be appropriate for patients that have undergone radiation to the breast or have had complications from previous attempts at breast reconstruction. This method typically requires the addition of a tissue expander/implant to obtain an adequate size breast. The back muscle is used to replace the damaged chest muscle and/or skin in order to adequately cover the implant and create a natural looking breast.
The procedure is carried out in two stages. As you lay on your side, one surgeon will perform the mastectomy while another surgeon begins to free the latissimus dorsi on your back from other muscle and tissue. The latissimus dorsi is then tunneled through the armpit and around the ribcage to lie directly on the breast. The muscle is trimmed to fit the area and secured with sutures. If necessary, an implant is also inserted to complete the shape of the breast as well as match the shape of the remaining breast.
After your surgery, you will be taken to a recovery room and monitored for a couple days to make sure you are healing correctly. Your breasts may be wrapped in gauze and you may experience swelling, bruising, and soreness. Once you go home, it is important that you rest and do not resume normal activity for at least four weeks. Slowly begin to do arm exercises to increase the back, side, and arm muscles. Do not attempt any strenuous activity for at least six weeks. Keep in contact with your surgeon to be sure you are recovering healthily.
For more information about tissue expander-based reconstruction, call our office at (702) 671-5110 or schedule your appointment online today.
You can also visit BreastReconstructionMatters.com for more information on latissimus based reconstruction.