Good advise on reconstruction....

Hi - first post. Any advise would be appreciated, I saw a surgeon who advised due to family history and because I was diagnosed with BC at 40 to a 2nd MX with reconstruction using the muscle both sides of my back.( I do appologise for not knowing all the correct words etc ) I was hoping that I could have used implants as I am a size 8. I am worried that the side effects outweigh the benifits. Also reading a few posts…what are expanders? I sound really ignorant, I’m sorry, but any help/advise would be appreciated.x

Hi, I have just had bi-lateral mastectomies with expanders. I am size 10, and my surgeon said he could do the back flap op, but would be little gain, as there was so little flesh and muscle to harvest that I would have to have an implant as well anyway. I was disappointed as that was the option I had hoped for and I had a friend who had bad experience of implants. The expanders are like bags they put under your chest muscle at the same time as mastectomy. mine were filled with 150ml saline, which has given me about the same size breasts as I had before!! (AA) but they need to be filled a bit more to stretch the muscle and skin to make a decent sized pocket to put in the final silicone implant. This is done by the breast care nurses where I am. You can get an expander implant that is already part silicone, then the other bit is filled with saline and you don’t have to have another op, but I was told they are not so robust. Also, I was told he could put the final silicone implant straight in, if I didn’t want to be too big, but result was less predictable , and might need more surgery to sort them out anyway. It is a nightmare trying to decide - my head was spinning! I have just posted onother thread saying that so far I am pleased with results. I never believed that i would feel this normal only 2 weeks post op! I found a book by Dick Rainsbury and Virginia Straker ‘Breast Reconstruction - Your Choice’ very helpful - I ordered it from my library. Good Luck with you decision making - ask lots of questions, even if you think they are stupid!