Surgery to the other breast

Surgeons carrying out breast reconstruction aim to match the size and shape of the reconstructed breast to your other breast. This is not always possible, so they may suggest you have an operation on your natural breast to give a better match. This can involve:

  • Breast reduction (mammoplasty). If your natural breast is larger than the reconstructed breast it can be reduced in size and altered in shape so that the final appearance is balanced.
  • Breast lifting and reshaping (mastopexy). If your natural breast is droopier than the reconstructed breast it can be lifted and reshaped.
  • Breast enlargement (augmentation). If your reconstructed breast is larger than your other breast and you prefer the larger breast, the natural breast can be made bigger with a silicone implant. This can sometimes be combined with a breast lift.

Surgery to your other breast will cause some scars, but these will fade with time. Some operations, such as repositioning the nipple, may lead to reduction or loss of sensation in the nipple.

Back to Types of breast reconstruction

Breast reconstruction using an implant

A breast implant can be put under the chest muscle to create a new breast shape.

Using your own tissue (flap reconstruction)

Reconstruction using your own tissue can give a natural feel to reconstructed breasts.

Using tissue from your back

A new breast shape can be made from muscle, fat and skin taken from the back. This is called an LD flap.

Using tissue from your tummy area

A new breast shape may be created using a flap of skin, fat and sometimes muscle from your tummy area.

Using tissue from the thighs or buttocks

New breast shapes can be made from fat and skin taken from your buttock or thighs.

Lipomodelling after breast reconstruction

Lipomodelling involves a doctor injecting fat from elsewhere in your body into your reconstructed breast to improve the look and feel of it.

Reconstruction after breast conserving surgery

If a large amount of tissue is removed from your breast, reconstructive surgery can improve how your breasts look.

Nipple reconstruction

Nipple reconstruction is usually done 4-6 months after breast reconstruction.