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Breast Reconstruction | General Hospital’s Breast Reconstruction Center

By Shannan Seely

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URL https://www.——.org/treatment-care/cancer/breast-cancer/breast
Browser Title Breast Reconstruction | General Hospital’s Breast Reconstruction Center
Page Title [h1] Breast Reconstruction Center of General Hospital Cancer Center
Descriptor Tag General Hospital’s Breast Reconstruction Center in New Jersey is located at the region’s only National Cancer Institute-designated Cancer Center. For a woman who undergoes a mastectomy, we offer a complete range of breast reconstruction options and support in one place.
Primary Keyword Breast reconstruction
Secondary Keywords Breast reconstruction options, breast reconstruction after mastectomy, breast reconstruction surgery

General Hospital’s Breast Reconstruction Center is the region’s only National Cancer Institute-designated Cancer Center. Only 70 centers have earned this designation in the United States. For a woman who undergoes a mastectomy, we offer a complete range of breast reconstruction options and support in one place.

Breast reconstruction restores a breast to near normal shape, appearance and size following a mastectomy. Patients who are dissatisfied with their breast appearance after a lumpectomy and radiation may also consider reconstructive surgery.

Women choose BRC because we provide reconstructive surgeries and related services not available at any other facility in the tri-state area.


Main Breast Reconstruction Options

When you are considering breast reconstruction after a mastectomy, the breast surgeon will refer you to a plastic surgeon for a consultation. You will discuss the options with your surgeon and weigh the benefits before undergoing a mastectomy. We offer three breast construction options: breast implants (filled with silicone or saline), natural tissue flaps (tissue taken from another part of your body) or a combination of the two methods.

1. Breast Implants

º Traditional sub-pectoral reconstruction

In this method, the plastic surgeon inserts breast implants under the chest muscle (subpectoral) to cover the implant. During the procedure, the doctor cuts a portion of the chest muscle and places the implants underneath.

º Pre-pectoral implant-based breast reconstruction

Plastic surgeons place the implant above the chest muscle (prepectoral) in this newer surgical technique. Patients benefit by avoiding the tightness and pain of movement with arms or muscles (known as animation deformity) due to a sub-pectoral reconstruction.

Our plastic surgeons perform more pre-pectoral breast surgeries at the Breast Reconstruction Center than any other medical facility in New Jersey.

º Conversion from sub-pectoral reconstruction to pre-pectoral reconstruction

General Hospital’s BRC is a leader in offering surgery that converts women from a sub-pectoral reconstruction to a pre-pectoral reconstruction. An early adopter of this procedure, we continue to perform this surgical technique not available in many cancer centers. The surgery eliminates animation deformity and improves the breast’s appearance.

2. Natural Tissue Flaps

º Breast flap reconstructive surgery — Deep inferior epigastric artery perforator (DIEP) flap reconstruction

For this surgery, plastic surgeons perform a microsurgical procedure known as the deep inferior epigastric artery perforator (DIEP) flap breast constructive surgery. The DIEP builds breasts from a woman’s tissue in the lower abdomen. Women are more satisfied with breasts made from their own tissue versus implants, resulting in a more natural shape and feel. This also eliminates the risks associated with implants.

3. Combination of Breast Implants and Natural Tissue Flaps


Timing of Breast Reconstruction Surgery

Your healthcare team will recommend either immediate or delayed reconstruction.

• Immediate

A woman has reconstructive surgery while still under general anesthesia after a mastectomy, known as immediate breast reconstruction.

• Delayed

The patient who undergoes radiation or chemotherapy after a mastectomy will require a period of healing. The surgeon performs plastic surgery several months or even years later, called delayed reconstruction.


Additional Breast Reconstruction Options

Our approaches to improve breast appearance after a unilateral mastectomy, lumpectomy, and radiation include:

• Lipofilling

The most common way to improve the breast’s shape is lipofilling or fat-grafting. Fat-grafting may reverse radiation’s side effects at the site, such as fibrous, or hard, skin and tissue.

• Symmetry reconstruction

The plastic surgeon performs a breast lift, a breast reduction, or breast augmentation (increasing the size using fat) on the native breast to match the reconstructed breast. The surgery occurs three to six months after the initial breast reconstruction.

• Nipple and areola reconstruction

Our medical tattoo artist specializes in 3-D nipple areola tattooing. She works at only six centers in the U.S., including the BRC. There is no charge for these services. We also offer other forms of nipple and areola reconstruction.


Your Breast Reconstruction Care Team

General Hospital’s Cancer Care Center brings top specialists together in one place, convenient to you and your loved ones. You will notice the high level of attention throughout the process because the team is in constant communication. Before you come to the hospital, a clinical nurse navigator will talk with you and answer any questions you may have.

Your team of caring medical professionals include:

  • Plastic surgeons
  • Reconstructive surgeons
  • Breast cancer surgeons
  • Nutritionists
  • Psychologists
  • Medical oncologists
  • Radiation oncologists
  • Geneticists


Schedule a Consultation

To schedule a consultation with a clinical nurse navigator, please call the Breast Reconstruction Center at 1.866.244.4343.


  1. Quick Facts — Breast Reconstruction Awareness (BRA Day USA). http://www.breastreconusa.org/education/breast-reconstruction-quick-facts/. Accessed December 15, 2018.
  2. NCI-Designated Cancer Centers – National Cancer Institute. https://www.cancer.gov/research/nci-role/cancer-centers. Accessed December 13, 2018.
  3. Komen Perspectives – Breast Reconstruction Options (May 2012) | Susan G. Komen®. https://ww5.komen.org/KomenPerspectives/Komen-Perspectives—Breast-Reconstruction-Options-(May-2012).html. Accessed December 20, 2018.