Consider Direct-to-Implant Procedure After Mastectomy, Plastic Surgeons Say

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Research shows more breast cancer patients are choosing mastectomy over lumpectomy. Plastic surgeons near Appleton, WI at Fox Valley Plastic Surgery say women should learn about all the reconstruction options available, including direct-to-implant.

The number of younger women choosing mastectomy after a breast cancer diagnosis is increasing according to a recent study ( by the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. This trend, according to Dr. David Janssen of Fox Valley Plastic Surgery, underscores the importance of informing patients of all reconstruction options, including direct-to-implant.

"Advances in breast reconstruction techniques during the past decade enable plastic surgeons to provide women better aesthetic results", says Dr. Janssen. Located near Appleton, WI, Fox Valley Plastic Surgery, draws breast reconstruction patients from as far as Milwaukee due to the innovative options the practice offers.

"The options available are dramatically better than those of a generation earlier," says Dr. Janssen. "Whether a woman chooses direct-to-implant reconstruction, a staged procedure, or reconstruction using her own muscle and tissue, the results are vastly superior to what was available even 10 years ago." He adds that federal law requires insurance companies to cover the costs of reconstruction, including the cost of reconstruction of both breasts to account for symmetry, if necessary.

Dr. Janssen says the direct-to-implant procedure is an example of the progress made in reconstructive surgery. The one-stage procedure allows women to avoid additional surgery by having an implant inserted at the time the general surgeon performs the mastectomy. When plastic surgeons at Fox Valley perform direct-to-implant reconstructive surgery, they use a tissue matrix, such as Alloderm®, which forms the bottom of the pocket where the implant is placed. It acts like a hammock, holding the implant in place while still retaining some elasticity to produce a breast that looks and feels more natural.

"Direct-to-implant is an ideal option for a woman who wants reconstruction and has enough skin after surgery to accommodate an implant." He emphasizes that collaboration between the general surgeon and the plastic surgeon is essential in all immediate reconstruction procedures.

Unfortunately, says Dr. Janssen, many women still are not provided enough information about breast reconstruction options. Extensive media coverage of actress Angelina Jolie's announcement that she underwent a preventive double mastectomy and breast reconstruction is beginning to change that. "This is a good example of where a woman in a smaller community such as Appleton can actually benefit from plastic surgery news from Hollywood," Dr. Janssen says. "As ethical plastic surgeons, we want our patients to be educated. Our objective is to give them enough information so they can make their own determination about what type of procedure will work best for them."


At Fox Valley Plastic Surgery ( in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, plastic surgery specialists Dr. David Janssen, Dr. William Doubek, and Dr. Marc Serret serve men and women from Appleton, Green Bay and Marquette. In addition to cosmetic surgery procedures, such as breast augmentation and tummy tucks, the practice offers non-surgical solutions, such as laser hair removal and vein treatments, through its Renaissance MediSpa. Dr. Serret, who has specialized training in migraine surgery and hair transplantation, completed the integrated residency program at Case Western Reserve University. He is the only physician in the Fox Valley performing migraine surgery, as well as endoscopic forehead rejuvenation. Dr. Janssen is a graduate of University of Wisconsin Medical School and received his plastic surgery training at George Washington University School of Medicine. Dr. Doubek is a graduate of St. Louis University School of Medicine and completed residencies in general surgery and plastic surgery at Mayo Graduate School of Medicine.

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Kathy Fredrickson
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