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What is Breast Reconstruction?

Breast reconstruction is the final step toward complete and total healing for women who have experienced a mastectomy due to cancer or any other serious health condition.

There are several different techniques—including flap techniques, tissue expansion, fat grafting, and surgical implants—used in breast reconstruction, any one of which can be used to restore your breasts to their normal shape, size, and condition. 

Am I a Good Candidate for Breast Reconstruction?

The most common candidates for breast reconstruction in Newport Beach with Garrett Wirth, MD, MS, FACS are women in Newport Beach or the surrounding areas who have undergone or will undergo a mastectomy due to cancer or another serious health condition.

In these cases, Dr. Wirth can rebuild the breast and restore a sense of feminine wholeness. Because this type of breast surgery is typically associated with traumatic and high-stress life events, Dr. Wirth will work closely with you to determine your unique plan for reconstruction.

Dr. Wirth will take into account:

  • Your personal medical history
  • Your aesthetic and cosmetic goals
  • Your unique physical anatomy


You and Dr. Wirth will develop a treatment plan that enables you to look and feel your absolute best.

young brunette woman in white dress

What can Be Achieved with Breast Reconstruction?

Garrett Wirth, MD, MS, FACS, can actually build a better breast with the use of his unique fenestrated design of FlexHD. FlexHD Pliable — also known as an internal bra — is the latest generation of allograft, designed to conform to and support the breast pocket and exclusively made for breast reconstruction. 

Using this special tissue to act as a “hammock” that holds the breast implant in place, Dr. Wirth creates a natural “sling” for the breast. Not only does FlexHD Pliable protect your implant, but it also creates and maintains the “lift” of your breast to prevent future sagging. 

The healing process is much faster, and the procedure lessens implant visibility and palpability, which aids in alleviating the possibility of necrosis of the flap during reconstruction.

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Types of Breast Reconstruction Options:

Dr. Wirth offers a range of advanced breast reconstruction options tailored to meet the unique needs and preferences of each patient.

DIEP Flap

The DIEP Flap procedure uses skin and fat from the lower abdomen to reconstruct the breast without sacrificing muscle, ensuring a more natural feel and appearance.

DIEP Flap »

Muscle Flap

Muscle flap reconstruction involves using muscle, typically from the back or abdomen, to create a new breast mound, providing a robust and durable option.

Muscle Flap »

Tissue Expanders

Tissue expanders are temporary devices placed under the skin and gradually filled with saline to stretch the skin and create space for a permanent implant.

Tissue Expanders »

Dorsi Flap

The Dorsi Flap technique utilizes muscle, fat, and skin from the back to reconstruct the breast, often combined with an implant for optimal shape and volume.

Dorsi Flap »

Nipple Reconstruction

Nipple reconstruction is the final step in breast reconstruction, creating a new nipple and areola to restore a natural look and symmetry to the breast.

Nipple Reconstruction »

What Are My Breast Reconstruction Options?

How Does the Procedure Work?

The procedure always begins with anesthesia in order to reduce intraoperative pain and discomfort, with the actual procedures followed in the surgery being heavily dictated by the condition of your skin, muscles, and tissue.

In some cases—most notably those involving tissue expanding breast implants—multiple treatments may be required to ensure optimal results in reconstruction.

Garrett Wirth, MD, MS, FACS will rebuild your breast through a series of flaps, muscle and skin flaps/grafts, tissue expanding breast implants, saline implants, or silicone implants, fat grafting, and more. Techniques include:

  • Tissue expansion and breast implants
  • Latissimus dorsi flap
  • reconstruction
  • TRAM flap reconstruction
  • DIEP flap reconstruction
  • Fat grafting
  • Nipple reconstruction

 Breast Reconstruction Results

Breast reconstruction can minimize a mastectomy's emotional and physical impact, improving quality of life by restoring the breast to a whole appearance. Although the breast skin may regain some sensation over time, the scar lines will fade but always be somewhat visible. 

Dr. Wirth will evaluate your results as the swelling subsides to determine whether additional procedures can achieve the desired results. Some considerations to maximize satisfaction with your results include the following:

  • Size: The reconstructed breast will more closely match the size of the other breast as the swelling subsides
    Effects of weight loss or gain: Depending on the type of reconstruction you receive, significant weight loss or gain may affect the balance of the breasts
  • Sagging: Over time, either the natural or the reconstructed breast may hang disproportionately to the opposite breast due to their structural differences
    Sensation: The texture of the reconstructed breast will be similar to your natural breast, but the sensation will be different as the nerves take time to regrow

If you find that changes have impacted your satisfaction with the appearance of your breasts, Dr. Wirth can evaluate the breasts and suggest additional treatment to bring them back into balance. Additionally, breast health will need to be carefully monitored through diagnostic techniques, such as self-exam, to ensure long-term health. 

smiling young woman in orange dress

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After Your Breast Reconstruction Procedure

Immediately following your breast reconstruction in Newport Beach, the incisions will be properly dressed and bandaged, and you will likely be given an elastic bandage or support bra to wear to help reduce swelling and to support your newly-rebuilt breast. Be sure to follow whatever instructions are provided by Garrett Wirth, MD, MS, FACS, and his team. In the weeks following reconstruction, avoid subjecting incision sites to excessive stress, motion, force, or abrasion.

The aesthetic outcomes of your breast surgery will be noticeable immediately. In time, residual swelling and irritation at incision sites will also decrease, but incision lines will always be visible to some degree. You will work closely with Dr. Wirth to evaluate the results of your cosmetic surgery and to ascertain whether or not further operations or treatments will be beneficial.

Featured Patient Testimonials

Breast Reconsruction Beach Before & After

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Breast Reconstruction Techniques

While the process of reconstruction was by no means an easy one, or pain-free, Dr. Wirth's attention to all my concerns made me feel confident that I was in the best hands. All questions were answered, no matter how many times I asked them. Dr. Wirth put my fears to rest. I felt good (and looked good!) during the expansion process and the results of the reconstruction came out to be PERFECT. Choosing Dr. Garrett Wirth as my surgeon made actual miracles happen!

L.B.

Expert Advice from a Published Author

Garrett Wirth, MD, MS, FACS is a plastic surgeon in Newport Beach who is passionate about providing his patients, and women around the world, with the information they need to achieve and maintain optimal breast health. 

From frank discussions about cosmetic surgery to straightforward explanations of breast cancer treatment options and what life looks like after breast cancer, Personalized Breast Care: A Guide for Cosmetic Surgery, Breast Cancer, and Reconstruction is a comprehensive guide for women of all ages. Understanding what to look for and what to expect is a hugely important aspect of being a strong advocate for your own healthcare.

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If you think breast reconstruction in Newport Beach might be the best way to restore your appearance and quality of life, we want to hear from you! Contact the office of Board Certified plastic surgeon Garrett Wirth, MD, MS, FACS to learn more about how we can help you to live your very best life today.

Breast Reconstruction FAQs:

What are the different types of breast reconstruction procedures?

There are several techniques available, including implant-based reconstruction, autologous tissue (flap) reconstruction, or a combination of both.

How long does breast reconstruction surgery take?

The duration of the surgery varies depending on the chosen technique and individual factors but typically ranges from two to six hours.

Will breast reconstruction surgery affect future mammograms?

Breast reconstruction surgery may make mammograms more challenging to interpret, but specialized techniques can be used to ensure accurate screening.

Will I have sensation in my reconstructed breast?

Sensation in the reconstructed breast may vary depending on the technique used. While some sensation may return over time, it's common for there to be diminished sensation compared to the natural breast.

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