Breast Reconstruction After Breast-conserving Surgery

Breast-conserving surgery does not remove the entire breast and women are often able to keep their nipples. Most women who have this type of surgery do not need breast reconstruction. However, some women might end up having a breast deformity as a result of the cancer surgery; for example, dimpling caused by removing a large tumor from a small breast. Some doctors are addressing this type of problem by combining cancer surgery and plastic surgery techniques, known as oncoplastic surgery. This type of reconstruction can often be done at the same time as your breast cancer surgery without the need for more operations.

These women may be candidates for different types of breast reconstruction to reshape the breast. One or more of the following techniques may be used to get the best results:

  • Breast lift (mastopexy)
  • Breast reduction (reduction mammaplasty)
  • Tissue flaps from areas close by like the back

The American Cancer Society medical and editorial content team

Our team is made up of doctors and oncology certified nurses with deep knowledge of cancer care as well as journalists, editors, and translators with extensive experience in medical writing.

American Society of Plastic Surgeons. Breast Reconstruction. Accessed at https://www.plasticsurgery.org/reconstructive-procedures/breast-reconstruction on July 28, 2021.

De La Cruz L, Blankenship SA, Chatterjee A, et al. Outcomes after oncoplastic breast-conserving surgery in breast cancer patients: A systematic literature review. Annals of Surgical Oncology 2016; 23(10):3247-3258.

Djohan R, Gage E, Bernard S. Breast reconstruction options following mastectomy. Cleve Clin J Med. 2008;75 Suppl 1:S17-23.

Jagsi R, King TA, Lehman C, Morrow M, Harris JR, Burstein HJ. Chapter 79: Malignant Tumors of the Breast. In: DeVita VT, Lawrence TS, Lawrence TS, Rosenberg SA, eds. DeVita, Hellman, and Rosenberg’s Cancer: Principles and Practice of Oncology. 11th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2019.

Losken A, Pinell-White X, Hodges M, Egro FM. Evaluating outcomes after correction of the breast conservation therapy deformity. Ann Plast Surg. 2015 Jun;74 Suppl 4:S209-13.

Mehrara BJ, Ho AY. Breast Reconstruction. In: Harris JR, Lippman ME, Morrow M, Osborne CK, eds. Diseases of the Breast. 5th ed. Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer Health; 2014.

National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN). Practice Guidelines in Oncology: Breast Cancer. Version 5.2021. Accessed at https://www.nccn.org/professionals/physician_gls/pdf/breast.pdf on July 28, 2021.

Patel K, Bloom J, Nardello S, Cohen S, Reiland J, Chatterjee A. An Oncoplastic Surgery Primer: Common Indications, Techniques, and Complications in Level 1 and 2 Volume Displacement Oncoplastic Surgery. Ann Surg Oncol. 2019 Jul 24. doi: 10.1245/s10434-019-07592-5. [Epub ahead of print].

References

American Society of Plastic Surgeons. Breast Reconstruction. Accessed at https://www.plasticsurgery.org/reconstructive-procedures/breast-reconstruction on July 28, 2021.

De La Cruz L, Blankenship SA, Chatterjee A, et al. Outcomes after oncoplastic breast-conserving surgery in breast cancer patients: A systematic literature review. Annals of Surgical Oncology 2016; 23(10):3247-3258.

Djohan R, Gage E, Bernard S. Breast reconstruction options following mastectomy. Cleve Clin J Med. 2008;75 Suppl 1:S17-23.

Jagsi R, King TA, Lehman C, Morrow M, Harris JR, Burstein HJ. Chapter 79: Malignant Tumors of the Breast. In: DeVita VT, Lawrence TS, Lawrence TS, Rosenberg SA, eds. DeVita, Hellman, and Rosenberg’s Cancer: Principles and Practice of Oncology. 11th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2019.

Losken A, Pinell-White X, Hodges M, Egro FM. Evaluating outcomes after correction of the breast conservation therapy deformity. Ann Plast Surg. 2015 Jun;74 Suppl 4:S209-13.

Mehrara BJ, Ho AY. Breast Reconstruction. In: Harris JR, Lippman ME, Morrow M, Osborne CK, eds. Diseases of the Breast. 5th ed. Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer Health; 2014.

National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN). Practice Guidelines in Oncology: Breast Cancer. Version 5.2021. Accessed at https://www.nccn.org/professionals/physician_gls/pdf/breast.pdf on July 28, 2021.

Patel K, Bloom J, Nardello S, Cohen S, Reiland J, Chatterjee A. An Oncoplastic Surgery Primer: Common Indications, Techniques, and Complications in Level 1 and 2 Volume Displacement Oncoplastic Surgery. Ann Surg Oncol. 2019 Jul 24. doi: 10.1245/s10434-019-07592-5. [Epub ahead of print].

Last Revised: October 20, 2021

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