A skin sparing mastectomy is a surgical technique that removes the breast tissue while leaving the skin intact. This technique, often referred to as breast conserving, typically results in less scarring and an improved ability to reconstruct the breasts with implants following the removal of the natural or cancerous tissue. By leaving the skin intact, the surgeon creates a skin pocket or envelope which can be filled with an implant or tissue from another part of the patient’s body. This usually results in an improved cosmetic outcome for the patient.
A nipple saving mastectomy is similar to a skin saving mastectomy is another form of breast conserving surgical technique that preserves the patient’s nipples as well as her breast skin. Also similarly to the skin saving surgery, the removal of the breast tissue leaves an envelope of skin that can be filled with an implant or with tissue from somewhere else on the patient’s body which results in an improved cosmetic outcome for the patient.
Traditional mastectomies remove all of the breast tissue including the skin and nipple, which results in a severely disfigured bust line. As surgical techniques have been improved and innovations made in technology, the nipple and skin saving techniques were developed. While reconstruction is possible after a traditional mastectomy, the surgeon has more options available and can produce more aesthetically pleasing results with the skin and nipple saving techniques. The nipple and skin saving surgical techniques are just as effective at removing cancer and just as safe as a traditional surgery. The main difference is the benefit to the patient in her post-surgical appearance. If you have questions about the different mastectomy techniques and want to know which surgery will best address your unique needs, make an appointment at the Breast Preservation Foundation for a consultation. Dr. Aronowitz and his colleagues are dedicated to protecting the health and the breasts of their patients.