Plastic Surgery Boca Raton Florida
Becker Breast Implants
M.D., F.A.C.S., F.R.C.S.
Board Certified Plastic Surgeon
Boca Raton, FL

Adjustable Breast Implants - Research Summary

BACKGROUND: According to the American Cancer Society, breast cancer is the most common cancer among women other than skin cancer. It is the second leading cause of cancer death in women after lung cancer. About 178,000 women in the United States will be found to have invasive breast cancer in 2007. About 40,000 women will die from the disease this year. Right now, there are more than 2 million women living in the United States who have been treated for breast cancer. The chance of a woman having invasive breast cancer some time during her life is about one in 8. The chance of dying from breast cancer is about 1 in 33. Breast cancer rates are going down. Experts believe the decline is probably the results of finding the cancer earlier and improved treatment.

SURGICAL TREATMENTS: There are two mainstay surgical treatments for breast cancer: a lumpectomy and a mastectomy. A lumpectomy removes only the breast lump and surrounding tissue. Radiation therapy is usually given after a lumpectomy. In a total mastectomy, the surgeon removes the entire breast including the nipple. This is sometimes done on both breasts, especially if a woman is at very high risk for breast cancer. A radical mastectomy is an extensive operation that removes the entire breast, lymph nodes and the chest wall muscles under the breast. This procedure can be particularly disfiguring. Possible side effects of a mastectomy and lumpectomy include wound infection, hematoma (accumulation of blood in the wound), and seroma (accumulation of clear fluid in the wound). Both procedures can also take an emotional toll on a woman.

STANDARD RECONSTRUCTION OPTIONS: Typically, women who underwent surgical treatment for their breast cancer would have to wait to have reconstructive surgery until they healed. Standard breast implants are the option most women chose. However, standard implants can be difficult for patient because their skin stretches dramatically during the procedure. With not much skin left, standard implants can often be painful for patients. It was also inconvenient to endure a second procedure, and many times, surgeons would have to operate again to make sure the implant was the correct size.

ADJUSTABLE IMPLANTS! Hilton Becker, M.D., a plastic surgeon in Boca Raton, Fla., invented a new procedure that makes reconstructive surgery much easier on patients. With an adjustable implant, the surgeon can perform reconstructive surgery at the same time as the mastectomy. A deflated implant in placed in the breast and attached to a port. The port can stay outside the body or can be placed in the skin and can last up to one year. The surgeon adds saline through the port to make the implant bigger or he can take some away to make it smaller — all without another procedure. “When we tell the patient, ‘You’re done. You don’t need any more surgery,’ they’re totally delighted,” says Dr. Becker. Once the patient is satisfied, the port is removed. Women who’ve had a mastectomy are the best candidates for the adjustable implants because they let the skin stretch slowly — allowing for better healing.

OTHER USES: The adjustable implants can also be used for women who just want to make sure they like the size of their implants without having a second surgery.

COST: Dr. Becker says insurance companies will typically cover the procedure for breast reconstruction but not for cosmetic purposes. The cost for cosmetic purposes runs between $5,000 and $8,000.

This article was reported by, which offers Medical Alerts by e-mail every day of the week. To subscribe, click on:

If you would like more information, please contact:

Hilton Becker, M.D., F.A.C.S.
5458 Town Center Road
Suite 101
Boca Raton FL 33486 1009
(561) 394-6656