Breast Reconstruction Questions

Andover and Lowell, Massachusetts - Nashua, Salem and Manchester, New Hampshire

Is breast reconstruction covered by insurance?

If your mastectomy was covered by your health insurance, congressional law requires that breast reconstruction also be covered. We will work with your insurance company to collect as much coverage as possible for this procedure. If you have had a partial mastectomy, breast reconstruction may also be possible. Health insurance companies are also required to cover reconstructive surgery on the opposite breast, if needed, to achieve breast symmetry.

Will breast reconstruction encourage a re-growth of cancer?

Breast recurrence does not increase the risk of recurrence of breast cancer. The risk of recurrent growth of breast cancer after mastectomy, or partial mastectomy, is the same with or without breast reconstruction.

When is the best time to have breast reconstruction?

Each woman's needs are unique and the best time to have breast reconstruction is a personal decision. However, board-certified Massachusetts and New Hampshire plastic surgeon, Dr. George P. Chatson, often recommends having your reconstruction at the same time as your mastectomy. This can help reduce the expenses and recovery of multiple breast surgery procedures. Immediate breast reconstruction at the time of mastectomy also minimizes the emotional effect of losing a breast as the reconstruction process is started right away. However, patients who have had mastectomy or partial mastectomy can have excellent results with reconstruction at a later date.  Dr. Chatson will work closely with you and your breast cancer surgeon and oncologist to determine the best time for your reconstructive procedure.

What is recovery from breast reconstruction like?

Pain, swelling, and bruising are common after breast reconstruction. These problems are addressed with the use of pain medications and muscle relaxants, when indicated. Most women are able to resume some activities within two weeks, but full recovery can take up to six weeks. During this time, Dr. Chatson will work closely with you to ensure that you are healing appropriately. Steps you take at home such as keeping the surgical area clean and resting will help to reduce your overall recovery time.

If you live in or around Andover or Lowell, Massachusetts, or Nashua, Salem, or Manchester, New Hampshire, or the surrounding areas, and have questions about breast reconstruction, please contact George P. Chatson, MD, to schedule an initial consultation today. Our board-certified plastic surgeon maintains two offices: one in Massachusetts 978-687-1151 and one in New Hampshire 603-882-2103 .