Adi Maisel Lotan, Krystina C.Tongson, Alice M.Police, Wojciech Dec
Choosing the optimal mastectomy incision must account for oncologic, reconstructive, and aesthetic considerations, including nipple preservation, mastectomy skin margins and potential for skin involvement, mastectomy skin perfusion and viability, mastectomy skin excess, previous breast scars, the reconstructive plan, and inconspicuous new scar placement. In the present study, we aimed to assess breast reconstruction aesthetics, as they are influenced by mastectomy incision design.
Nine commonly utilized mastectomy incision patterns were grouped into 3 categories: hidden scar, vertical scar, and transverse scar. Twenty plastic surgeons were asked to blindly grade before and after photographs of reconstructed breasts with regard to scar visibility and position and according to their influence on breast aesthetics.
Statistically significant differences were observed between the study groups. Mastectomies and reconstructions performed through hidden incisions yield the most aesthetic results. Vertical scars are favorable to transverse scars. In the case of bilateral reconstructions, symmetric scar placement is paramount to optimizing aesthetic outcomes.
The mastectomy incision pattern significantly affects the aesthetic outcomes in breast reconstruction. Patterns borrowed from cosmetic breast surgery consistently yield highly aesthetic outcomes. Surgeons must consider oncologic factors and patient characteristics in choosing an ideal incision for each patient.
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