Direct-To-Implant Breast Reconstruction in Lone Tree and Heritage Hills, CO

Direct-to-implant breast reconstruction allows patients to return to their lives more quickly than a staged approach, but there’s still a recovery period. After your procedure, you can typically expect soreness, tightness, or tingling sensations around your breasts. It’s also normal to feel fatigued for several weeks after surgery.

While swelling or bruising can take slightly longer to subside, patients can usually return to most normal activities within six weeks. You should wait until you get the all-clear from your surgeon to resume intense exercise or heavy lifting. Our providers will give you detailed post-operative care instructions to ensure your recovery goes as quickly and smoothly as possible. You’ll also meet with your surgeon as you heal to ensure your recovery is on track.

Choosing Your Direct-to-Implant Breast Reconstruction Surgeon

When choosing a surgeon for your direct-to-implant reconstruction, you should keep a few qualifications in mind. Look for a board-certified plastic surgeon since this indicates he or she has completed a surgical residency and passed a rigorous oral and written examination. Your surgeon should also have extensive experience and be able to provide examples of past work. Your oncology team will also be able to recommend surgeons they trust.

Our board-certified plastic surgeons, Dr. Jeremy Williams and Dr. Christopher Williams, have extensive experience with advanced breast reconstruction techniques. If you choose to work with our team, you’ll be in highly qualified and empathetic hands.

Direct-to-Implant Breast Reconstruction

In traditional implant-based procedures, a surgeon will place a tissue expander beneath your chest wall, which expands the skin so implants can be placed. Every week or so, your surgeon will fill the expander with sterile saline solution through a small port that is left in place. This periodic stretching of the skin creates the pocket that will eventually hold your saline or silicone breast implant. This method allows you to ultimately choose your breast size, and may be necessary depending on your chemotherapy or radiation schedule.

Direct-to-implant reconstruction skips the tissue expansion step and instead goes straight to the implant. Also called one-stage or single-stage, this procedure involves placing the breast implant in the same surgery as the mastectomy. In doing so, you avoid weeks or months of repeated visits to the operating room, allowing you to get back to your life more quickly.

In this procedure, one of our experienced Denver plastic surgeons steps in as soon as your general surgeon has completed the mastectomy. The implant is placed immediately, and you leave the hospital with your new reconstructed breast.

Who Is the Ideal Candidate for a Direct-To-Implant Breast Reconstruction?

During your one-on-one consultation, your plastic surgeon will discuss whether you are a good candidate for this technique. The ideal candidate for one-stage breast reconstruction:

  • Has smaller breasts that do not require tissue expansion
  • Does not have a history of radiation to the breast or to the chest wall
  • Is undergoing a prophylactic mastectomy

Your medical history and the nature of your breast cancer also play a major role in establishing your candidacy for this procedure. We’ll discuss all of your breast reconstruction options during your consultation at our Park Meadows office.

Advantages of the Single-Stage Procedure

The number one advantage of this type of breast reconstruction is the time you save after undergoing surgery to remove a natural breast. Rather than having to return for multiple surgeries, you can have one surgery in which the implant is placed as soon as your natural tissue is removed. But for some women, there are better options that outweigh the benefits of a single-stage procedure. The only way to know which type of reconstructive breast surgery will be best for you is to discuss your options with our board-certified plastic surgeons.

Frequently Asked Questions about Direct-to-Implant Breast Reconstruction

With direct-to-implant breast reconstruction gaining popularity, more patients have questions about this technique. Here’s what you need to know before your procedure.

Is Direct-to-Implant Breast Reconstruction Safe?

Direct-to-implant breast reconstruction is safe and effective for many mastectomy patients. A 2020 study of 1,286 patients showed that single-stage breast reconstruction had lower complication rates than reconstruction using tissue expanders and comparable rates to autologous reconstruction.

That said, many women can only achieve their desired results through staged reconstruction. Our experienced reconstruction specialists are highly skilled in direct-to-implant, staged, and autologous reconstruction and can determine if you’re a good candidate for certain procedures.

What Types of Implants Are Used for Breast Reconstruction?

There are mainly two types of implants that can be used to rebuild the breasts during breast reconstruction surgeries, but at Park Meadows Cosmetic Surgery, we understand that implants are not a one-size-fits-all solution. Scheduling a one-on-one consultation with our board-certified plastic surgeons will be the best way for them to determine which type of implant can help you achieve a successful breast reconstruction.

The types of implants used in breast reconstruction include:

Saline breast implants - Saline implants are filled with sterile salt water and are the types of implants that have been used the longest in plastic surgery. Some saline implants can come pre-filled, while others will be filled during the surgical procedure. Saline implants maintain a firm, full, and round appearance to the breast. Saline implants that are made with an inner structure can provide a natural look and feel.

Silicone breast implants - Silicone implants are made of cohesive gel and can mimic the feeling of natural breast tissue. The thickest type of silicone implants are also called “gummy bear implants,” as their thick, form-stable structure can keep its shape even if the implant’s shell is cut, broken, or damaged. These implants are less likely to rupture and cause complications, and have a more natural look and feel than saline implants. 

How Long Does Direct-to-Implant Reconstruction Surgery Last?

During your direct-to-implant surgery, your surgical team will coordinate to perform two procedures: a mastectomy and breast reconstruction. This process typically takes three to four hours but can vary based on your unique circumstances.

What Kind of Anesthesia Is Used During Direct-to-Implant Breast Reconstruction?

Your mastectomy and direct-to-implant breast reconstruction will be performed under general anesthesia so you won’t feel any pain during the procedure. After your surgery, you can expect to stay in the hospital overnight for observation. Barring any complications, patients can usually go home within 24 hours.

Will I Need Drains After Single-Stage Breast Implant Reconstruction?

Yes, the majority of patients will have drains after one-stage breast reconstruction. These remove excess fluids that can accumulate after surgery. Drains typically stay in place for 10 to 14 days.

Is Single-Stage Breast Reconstruction a “One and Done” Procedure?

One of the biggest draws of direct-to-implant breast reconstruction is that many patients want to avoid multiple procedures requiring general anesthesia and recovery time. Single-stage breast reconstruction can provide long-lasting results for many women in a single procedure. Some might choose to undergo outpatient nipple reconstruction at a later date if they weren’t a candidate for a nipple-sparing mastectomy.

What Are the Risks of Direct-To-Implant Breast Reconstruction?

Just like any other cosmetic treatment, direct-to-implant breast reduction can still come with several risks. While they are quite rare, these risks can include the following:

  • Excessive bleeding
  • Infection
  • Poor healing of incisions
  • Reactions to anesthesia
  • Changes in nipple sensation
  • Changes in skin sensation
  • Rupture
  • Breast implant-associated anaplastic large cell lymphoma (BIA-ALCL)
  • Breast implant-associated squamous cell carcinoma (BIA-SCC)
  • Brain fog
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or joint pain
  • Asymmetry

With experienced, board-certified plastic surgeons like Dr. Jeremy Williams and Dr. Christopher Williams, these risks can be easily minimized. At Park Meadows Cosmetic Surgery, patients can feel comfortable and confident knowing their surgeons prioritize health, comfort, and safety during each breast reconstruction procedure.

Will There Be Scarring After a Breast Reconstruction Surgery?

When it comes to breast reconstruction, we understand that the importance of the appearance of your chest is important, especially after a battle with cancer, mastectomy, or severe injury. That’s why, when it comes to scarring, our surgeons try to minimize the appearance of a scar as much as possible. However, most breast reconstruction surgeries do involve incisions, which can lead to scarring. If you find that the appearance of your scar is bothersome to you after you have achieved full healing from your breast reconstruction procedure, our team will be happy to recommend treatments that can help lighten the appearance of your scars.

Are the Results from Breast Reconstruction Permanent?

Breast implants are designed to last up to 15 years before needing to be replaced. Because of this, direct-to-implant breast reconstruction surgeries cannot provide permanent results. However, restoring the appearance of healthy breasts can be life-changing.

Routine visits and follow-up appointments with your breast surgeon and primary doctor over the years will help to monitor the potential of any complications with your implants. At the end of 15 years, when you need a replacement, the Park Meadows Cosmetic Surgery team will happily welcome you back!

Schedule a Breast Reconstruction Consultation in Lone Tree, CO

To learn more about direct-to-implant breast reconstruction, please contact Park Meadows Cosmetic Surgery using the form on this page or by dialing 303-706-1100 to schedule an appointment with one of our Denver cosmetic surgeons.

Testimonial

"As someone who reached surgeons extensively without finding one that I felt comfortable with, I was so happy to find the doctors at Park Meadows Cosmetic Surgery. The staff, in addition to both Dr. Jeremy Williams and Dr. Christopher Williams, made me feel at ease. They listened to my concerns and offered sound advice on how I could achieve my aesthetic goals. Meeting with them was the best decision I ever made, and I can’t wait to see my final result!"

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PARK MEADOWS
COSMETIC SURGERY

7430 E. Park Meadows Dr.
Suite 300
Lone Tree, CO 80124

303-706-1100

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Saturday-Sunday: Closed

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