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Cosmetic Surgery Decisions

May 3rd, 2016

Dr. Mahsa Moghaddam at BCSC

In the current issue of Southwest Metro Magazine, our own Dr. Mahsa Moghaddam and her patient are interviewed about the importance of feeling confident in understanding surgical options when approaching the notion of cosmetic surgery. However, even as plastic surgery is more commonly discussed in media today and marketing hype is in over-drive, women can still sometimes feel uncomfortable about seeking information, perhaps feeling it is too vain to want a cosmetic change.

In an excerpt from the article she explains, “Is there something about your physical appearance bothering you enough that you want to change it? Is it hurting your quality of life?” Moghaddam says if you answer yes, you should consider speaking with a plastic surgeon. It’s most important to find the right doctor for you and she offers a few suggestions to follow.

According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery almost 2 million cosmetic procedures were performed last year, so you are not alone in considering surgery. Do your homework, schedule consulations and be sure to have all your questions answered. Feel confident in your decision, because as Dr. Moghaddam sees it, “Ultimately, an informed patient is more likely to be a happy patient because he or she has chosen that procedure understanding all the facts, and will be more likely to be invested in it in their recovery.”



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Breast Cancer Part 4: Reconstruction with Implants

October 30th, 2014

Expander Implant

Choices in Reconstruction

Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in US women. Research has found that breast reconstruction contributes to a woman’s self-esteem and sense of wellbeing; however, over 70% of women eligible for breast reconstruction are not told about all of their options. Breast reconstruction generally falls into two categories: implant reconstruction or reconstruction using a person’s own tissue, also known as autologous reconstruction.

We discussed breast reconstruction with fat transfer and reconstruction with flap techniques in previous blogs. Today we will complete our educational series by discussing implant based reconstruction. No matter what your choice, breast reconstruction is inherently staged. This means it will involve multiple procedures, each being one of the stages, to achieve an optimal outcome.    

Implant Based

A temporary expander, placed under the pectoral muscle, creates a pocket, which will eventually accommodate a permanent silicone or saline implant. This procedure frequently requires an overnight stay in the hospital and has a recovery time of several weeks. Expansion starts a few weeks after the first surgery after the incisions have healed. The expansion process requires multiple office visits and may take anywhere from two months to one year based on the individual needs and desires of the patient. Once the expansion is complete, the expander is exchanged for an implant during an outpatient surgical procedure.  Additional procedures may be required to achieve the desired appearance, shape and symmetry.

Implants are manmade and will eventually fail. Rupture rates are similar for saline and silicone implants and average between 20-25% at 10 years. After 10 years, the rupture rate increases significantly. When a saline filled implant ruptures, your body safely reabsorbs the fluid and the reconstructed breast will flatten as a result. Silicone is a synthetic product and may go undetected when it ruptures. Instead, tissues may become inflamed, causing complications with scar tissue and calcification. When a silicone implant ruptures, it should be replaced promptly. Since silicone ruptures are often silent ruptures, the FDA recommends that women with silicone implants undergo an MRI test three years after having the implants placed and every two years thereafter. This maintenance is an additional personal and financial responsibility for the woman choosing silicone implants.

If you are diagnosed with breast cancer, you have many choices to make so take the time to make the right ones. Immediate reconstruction is safe, but you are not necessarily burning any bridges by delaying your reconstruction for personal reasons. Overcoming breast cancer is a journey and you are not alone. Speak with your primary care physician, breast surgeon and plastic surgeon about your options and help them make the decisions that will give you the best quality of life in the long run. Please click here if you missed Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 of our series.

Photo: Breast Reconstruction with Expander/Implant.

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