Tissue Expanders


TREATMENT

The tissue expander method involves the temporary placement of an implant that is designed to expand when filled gradually with liquid. Over time, this expansion creates excess skin in the area where the breast used to be, permitting us to carry out a second operation to insert a standard breast implant (silicone gel) to recreate the original breast shape. After a few months, a third operation is performed under local anaesthetic to reconstruct the areola and nipple.

The first stage of surgery takes about two hours while the second, when the definitive prosthesis is implanted, takes about an hour and a half.

Liquid is administered during period visits to the clinic until the desired volume of skin expansion is achieved. Once the ideal size is reached, the second operation is carried out between two and six months later.


PROCEDURE

The tissue expander method involves the temporary placement of an implant that is designed to expand when filled gradually with liquid. Over time, this expansion creates excess skin in the area where the breast used to be, permitting us to carry out a second operation to insert a standard breast implant (silicone gel) to recreate the original breast shape. After a few months, a third operation is performed under local anaesthetic to reconstruct the areola and nipple.

The first stage of surgery takes about two hours while the second, when the definitive prosthesis is implanted, takes about an hour and a half.

Liquid is administered during period visits to the clinic until the desired volume of skin expansion is achieved. Once the ideal size is reached, the second operation is carried out between two and six months later.

Hospitalisation

The first operation usually requires admission for two days, while the implantation of the silicone prosthesis implantation usually requires one days´ admission followed by a week of rest.

Anaesthesia

This operation requires a general anaesthetic.


PRE-OPERATIVE

As with all surgery, a full medical exam must be carried out to detect any abnormality that would contraindicate the operation.


AFTERCARE

After the first surgery, the patient should take plenty of rest during the first week, beginning to return to their normal daily pattern during the second week.



F.A.Q.

The success of this operation depends, among other factors, on the quality of the skin. Therefore it is not recommended in patients undergoing radiation therapy, since this causes a devitalisation of the thorax tissue.

The tissue expander method is defined by the limitations of the prosthesis:
- Limited time. The patient should be monitored every 10-15 years to confirm the status of the prosthesis and check for any wear. In case of wear, replacement surgery must be carried out.
- Asymmetry of the breasts
- Risk of capsular contracture - tissue hardening around the implant, which forms a scar capsule and creates an immobile, asymmetrical appearance, often causing discomfort to the patient.


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