• Breast reconstruction for one breast and breast lift for the other

    Asked by Kris on Wednesday, February 8, 2012

    Breast reconstruction for one breast and breast lift for the other

    After a mastectomy on one side, I am considering breast reconstruction; it will have to be a latismal or TRAM. My plastic surgeon has also said I will need a breast lift on the other side to make them even. Has anyone been through this, are you satisified with the look of the two and your sensation in the natural breast? Is the pain excrutiating but worth it?

    7 Answers from the Community

    7 answers
    • janigirl's Avatar

      I am scheduled to have diep surgery on 3/28. I had a bilaterial mastectomy 11/5/10. A bit nervous. I too would love to hear from women that have gone through this. I have been told by many women in my support group that the pain is worth it. Good luck to you and keep me posted.

      over 4 years ago
    • CountryGirl's Avatar

      According to a recent conversation to a plastic surgeon specializing in breast reconstruction, DIEP is a much better surgery because it involves the removal of abdominal fat but not the removal of muscle tissue that compromises the abdominal wall.

      Unfortunately for me, doctors within my network only offer tram and lat flap. As a result, I remain without reconstruction. To make the decision, I asked the plastic surgeon to provide the names and contact information of five past patients so I could call them. All five expressed limited abilities: chronic pain with tram, loss of strength with lat flap. Although each was happy about the reconstruction, they were open about the consequences as well.

      I personally, was unable to accept deminished athleticism. Before cancer, I swam, rode horses, ran, helped my husband build our house. I still want to do all those things. Above all, I'd suffered enough. I didn't want to add more complications. My choose for decline reconstruction is not without emotional consequences. DIEP would be the only reconstructive choice I would possibly accept.

      Of course, i can only speak from my own experiences and research, but I hope this helps.

      over 4 years ago
    • RhoMo's Avatar

      I too am getting ready for recontructive surgery! I am very glad to have read some of the answers that you received. I have decided to have the DIEP and receive a Tummy tuck and breast reduction with mine. I feel I deserve it for everything that I have been through. My research tells me that is the best choice. I definitely do not want the muscle from the back to be used. I want to stay away from anything that requires using any muscle. Being athletic and active is the key to surviving all of this. I wish you luck and hope to see postings about how everything goes. I did not have a scheduled date yet.

      over 4 years ago
    • bcwarrioragain's Avatar

      Hi Ladies!
      I am a DIEP reconstruction after bi-lateral mast (one side profolactic).
      I struggled through recovery from the surgery more than most patients, my Plastic Surg. was surprised how long it took. However; in spite of that, I am very happy with my decision to use the DIEP method. The tummy tuck was nice, but I like knowing that it is my tissue inside of me. I don't have to worry about faulty implants.
      I had my surgery about 3 years ago.
      The side I had cancer and radiation on is much more firm than the other. It does require adjustments and modification.
      A woman, who spoke from her experience, once told me, "it isn't the same as what God gave you". I thought she was crazy! Now I know what she meant- it isn't the same, but that doesn't mean it is bad either.
      I wish you the best with your plans as you move forward.
      The decision to reconstruct or not, and which method to use is a personal decision. There are so many factors to consider. No choice is wrong, unless you aren't happy with it, and in that case- just choose again.

      over 4 years ago
    • laurie's Avatar

      I had a mastectomy, tram flap reconstruction and a lift on my other breast seven weeks ago. The first few weeks home from the hospital were the worst. The recovery has been long but the results have been great! Still have swelling in the abdomen. I have been told that the swelling can last for months. I will have a second surgery in a few months to reconstruct the nipple and they will will do some liposuction to contour the abdomen and the new breast. I am going to have hi take some fat off my thighs at the same time.

      over 4 years ago
    • leepenn's Avatar

      I've decided against reconstruction for a few reasons. One big one is that I do not want multiple surgeries. I'll be doing the bilateral mastectomy on Monday. I'm quite at peace with being flat chested... In fact, as an athlete, I look forward to my improved power to weight ratio after I recover my fitness.

      One thing I really don't understand is why reconstruction requires two or more surgeries if a person wants just small reconstructed breasts.... Seems like everything is geared to people wanted to be B/C and bigger.... Alas.

      I also worry about the surgical movement of muscle tissue and do not want to compromise my athletic strength etc...

      So, in the end, I have opted out of reconstruction. It's such a personal decision. I figure I can always get the light weight fakees for when I wear something (e.g., bridesmaid dress in March) that needs a little something something.... Otherwise, I am looking forward to going braless 99+% of the time!

      GOOD LUCK! I think it's hard to figure all this out. Fortunately, I had chemo first, which gave me months to figure out what's going to be best for me.

      Best wishes,


      over 4 years ago
    • DaveWaz's Avatar

      I hope all is well.

      Your question reminded me of some content we have on reconstruction experiences.




      It also reminded me to let WhatNexters know about our Beginner's Guide to Cancer, including a guide on how women chose between a lumpectomy and mastectomy.


      Best of luck to all,

      about 3 years ago

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