Implant only anyone?

Hope someone can help. I am 6 years post mastectomy (one side) and at clinic yesterday the doctor asked me if I had thought about reconstruction. She said things have ‘come a long way’ in the past six years and she said that I could have an implant only recon.

I wondered if anyone has had one of these and if they are successful. I am not too keen to keep having surgery if it fails. I have a fairly small bust (36a).

Love Crystal

I’d like to know the answer to that too, as I turned down immediate reconstruction and don’t really want it in the future. However, if I could just have an implant in, then I’d probably go ahead with reconstruction. It was the tissue expander I didnt like the idea of, and any of the flaps etc weren’t a possibility for me I was told.

But, would it work with just an implant? I’m a 34B and don’t know about you, but I have no spare skin on my “boobless side” to cover an implant, if you know what I mean - so if they put an implant in, what would they cover it with? I’ve heard of strattice - think they offered me strattice and tissue expander for reconstruction. Without the tissue expander, would strattice cover the implant?

Anybody out there able to answer for us please? :slight_smile:

With much love,
Shelley xx

Hello again!

I’ve just had a quick look on the MacMillan website, and found this information:-
macmillan.org.uk/Cancerinformation/Causesriskfactors/Genetics/Risk-reducingbreastsurgery/Reconstructionusingimplants.aspx

Hope the link works! From what it says there, it looks as if you can have an implant only reconstruction if you’ve had a skin-sparing mastectomy with or without nipple conservation. I haven’t - rather than skin-sparing, I’ve got quite a crater, but for me personally, after the initial body image problems I’ve had, I’m now just glad I have no remaining spare skin there, as they warned me my second primary (Paget’s disease)could only ever recur as skin cancer in that area (they reassured me highly unlikely of recurrence though).

My friend had mx about 10yrs ago, and still has a cleavage, so I think hers must have been skin sparing. I do hope you can go ahead with implant only reconstruction Crystal, if that’s what you decide. Take care, n pls keep us posted. :slight_smile:

With love,
Shelley xxx

Luv xxx

Hi pinkcrystal,

After reading your post I wondered if you have read BCC’s Reconstruction publication, so I have put the link for you below. If you would like to have a chat with the helpline staff here they will be able to talk to you more about the different types of reconstruction that are now available.

breastcancercare.org.uk/healthcare-professionals/publications/quick-order-list/*/changeTemplate/PublicationDisplay/publicationId/107/

Hope this helps. Take care,
Jo, Facilitator

Hi I had an implant only ten weeks ago, my consultant did a skin sparing masectomy, I will have a nipple recon next. I have been fine with a bra on you can not tell the difference.

Thank you for your comments and thanks to Shelley for the link, it was very interesting but I read that there can be problems with ‘capsulating’ so still not convinced. I will phone the helpline to find out more.

I am fairly happy with my prothesis so perhaps I should just keep with that, although it would be nice to be able to wear lower tops.

Thanks too to Camper for replying and good to know that you are pleased with your implant. Was it a long operation, or was it quite simple?

Love and best wishes,
Crystal xx

Hi Crystal,
I think the op took about 3hrs,I wasn’t in any pain after just uncomfortable. mine was an immediate recon with implant, my choice was implant or nothing I am only small so I don’t know if that had anything to do with it.I really don’t like the look of it so I am hoping when he reconstructs the nipple it will look better.all the best with what you decide.
love camper x

Hi,

I had a tissue expander put in Feb this year and I am due the exchange on friday so I can let you know what the final result is like.

I am really pleased with the result so far and it is wonderful to wear anything I want again and not feel self conscious. I was a 36C and the expander worked really well.

I had my lymph nodes removed at the same time as expander so a little bit of a longer operation but no where near what the Mx was like. They put by expander in with 100ml of saline and then after 2 months injected 50ml saline every other week to stretch the skin and muscle to get to the desired size. The operation also went in through my mascetomy scar so I only have one scar at the moment.

Hope that helps
Emma x