Breast Reconstruction Surgery post-mastectomy (usually after breast cancer treatment)
Our Breast Reconstruction Specialist Surgeon operates at accredited major hospitals in Melbourne using only experienced anaesthetists and a top team of surgical support staff.
Melbourne’s Specialist Reconstructive Surgeon
Dr Geoff Barnett is our Specialist Plastic Surgeon for Breast Reconstruction and is an expert at breast reconstruction techniques.
Autologous Breast Reconstruction (using your own tissue) is a popular and safe technique. Other surgical reconstructive techniques include using breast tissue expanders, breast implants, synthetic meshes and biologic matrices (like ADM).
Dr Barnett prefers using the BECKER expander/implant. Each patient’s needs are different and Dr Barnett will personalise a specific reconstruction surgery plan for you.
About Natural Tissue Breast Reconstruction
Your own tissue is used in this operation to reconstruct a new breast. Tissue is taken from the back or ‘Tummy Tuck‘ region and no synthetic prostheses or expanders are necessary. Natural tissue breast reconstruction surgery can either be performed at the time of mastectomy or as a delayed reconstruction when body healing is normal (i.e. after chemotherapy or radiotherapy has finished).
Your ‘new’ breast will be soft, with a natural curve, and of normal weight and body temperature. This new ‘normal’ body image has major psychological benefits compared to mastectomy. Confidence and self-esteem improves in all aspects of life, including wearing normal clothes, sports and sex life.
How is the operation performed?
- A flap of muscle, fat and skin, with its own blood supply, is transferred from either the back or lower abdomen.
- These are reliable methods with a low incidence of complications.
- You will be advised on the best method for your reconstruction.
- Operating time, when combined with mastectomy may take three to five hours.
The two techniques commonly used by Mr Geoff Barnett are:
- The Free T.R.A.M. Flap Technique – Using tissue from the tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) area
- The Latissimus Dorsi Added Fat Flap Technique – Using tissue from your back
Even though every effort will be taken to make the scars as inconspicuous as possible, they are the inevitable result of this procedure. One of the principal aims in this operation is to make the scars easily covered by your swimwear or lingerie.
How long will I be in hospital?
This procedure requires admission to hospital and general anaesthesia. Your hospital stay will depend on your overall health and the extent of the procedure, and may be up to five to seven days.
What happens during recovery period after the surgery?
- You may expect some temporary swelling and bruising, which may result in a slight asymmetry with the other breast.
- Other post-operative complications, such as delayed healing, infection or localised blood collections are uncommon.
- All potential complications will be discussed in detail prior to your operation.
What else needs to be done? Are there any additional procedures necessary?
Once the new breast has matured, nipple reconstruction and later colour tattooing can be done. Should your other breast require any adjustment, this can be best done in hospital with an overnight stay.
Support for Interstate and Overseas Patients
Please visit our Interstate and Overseas Patients page to find out how we can help you.
Next Steps on your Surgical Journey
How to Book your Initial Consultation
- Email us below or Call on (03) 8849 1444 to arrange your surgeon consultation appointment OR
- Book a FREE 15-minute Phone Chat with our Patient Liaison Manager. Click here.
- A Referral from your GP or specialist is helpful but NOT essential – you can have a consultation without a GP Referral although no rebates are claimable without one.
- Schedule a confidential consultation with your selected Specialist Surgeon by paying the $200 booking fee.
Want more information before scheduling your Surgeon consultation?
- Request more information – DOWNLOAD A GUIDE about the procedure or contact us
- Book a Complimentary Consultation with a Nurse.
- Organise a phone call with Patient Coordinator (FREE) Click here.
- Attend our Regular Practice FREE Events and hear from our Team of Plastic Surgeons along with their top support team.
- Speak with a past patient that has had the procedure you want – call or contact us
Please contact us using the form below to arrange a consultation with one of our expert Specialist Plastic Surgeons or to speak with our Patient Care Team on (03) 8849 1444.