Your Initial Breast Reconstruction Consultation

The role of the consultation (or consultations many patients require multiple appointments) is to ensure that you feel informed, confident and excited. During your initial consultation in Bellevue, Dr. Min will ask you about your health and your mastectomy procedure (post-op or planned), and you will discuss the position, shape, and size you are looking for, as well as any specific concerns you have about their feel or appearance. He will walk you through your options, explain the details of the different breast reconstruction procedures, and answer any questions you may have. You will have an opportunity to view extensive before and after photos and see examples of the different procedures you’ve discussed. Dr. Min will then ask you questions about your health and lifestyle and assess your breasts for shape, size, symmetry, and areola position. He will share and explain his opinions with you about which surgical techniques are most appropriate for you based on your desired outcome and the results of your exam, and together you will decide on the details and timing of your procedure. Finally, Dr. Min will make sure you know exactly what will happen on the day of your procedure, what you will experience while you recover, and what you can expect in the months and years to follow.

After Your Breast Reconstruction Procedure

You are still our Bellevue patient after you leave, and we will be there for you as you recover from breast reconstruction to answer any questions you may have and advise you on any side effects you may be feeling.

Implant Breast Reconstruction

You can expect to feel tired and sore after the surgery, and you will experience some swelling and discomfort at the point of your incision, both of which can be managed with medication.

Light activity is encouraged during your recovery, and you can resume regular, non-strenuous activity after a few days of rest. You should avoid strenuous activity or heavy lifting for at least 2 weeks and avoid high-impact activities (skiing, wakeboarding, contact sports) for the duration of your recovery (6-8 weeks). Your stitches will dissolve and be absorbed by your body, so you will not have to worry about getting them removed.

Tissue Flap Breast Reconstruction

Your procedure will likely involve a 2-3 day inpatient stay in a hospital. You can expect some pain and discomfort, which will be controlled intravenously. You will wear a surgical bra over your incisions for 2 to 3 days. Plan on very limited physical activity for at least six weeks. No lifting over fifteen pounds for 6 weeks. You will have drains that will require you to measure and record the fluid that your body expresses. These are usually removed in 1 to 2 weeks in the office.

Your follow-up visits will begin 3-4 days following your discharge from the hospital. During your postoperative visits, Dr. Min will review activity limitations, incision care, and concerns you may have. You can expect follow-up visits at 3 weeks, 6 weeks, 3 months, 6 months, then every year thereafter. Surgical revisions and nipple reconstruction are frequently necessary to complete the final process.