To place an implant after mastectomy, the surgeon will use the same incision that was used to remove the breast tissue. The implant may be placed directly under the skin, but it is usually put under the chest muscle.
Often, before an implant is placed, a doctor will first place a balloon (or tissue expander) beneath the chest muscle. Saline is added to the expander every 1 to 2 weeks to help stretch the skin and muscle. This may take several months. When the muscle and skin are stretched enough, the expander is taken out and an implant is put in.
Current as of: July 26, 2016
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine & Laura S. Dominici, MD - General Surgery,
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2017 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
Donations to UW Health are managed by the University of Wisconsin Foundation, a publicly supported charitable organization under 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.