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

Experience with the Mentor Contour Profile Becker-35 Expandable Implants in Reconstructive Breast Surgery

A study on the Becker Adjustable Breast Implants was done on 36 patients proving them to be to be successfully used for single-stage prosthetic breast reconstruction.

Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Cambridge Breast Unit, Addenbrooke’s University Hospital, Cambridge, UK.

INTRODUCTION: Round expander-implants (Beckers 25 and 50) and anatomical expander-prostheses filled with firm cohesive gel (McGhan Style 150) are established choices for single-stage expander breast reconstruction. Because of their drawbacks we selectively adopted the anatomical Becker-35 expander-implant filled with soft cohesive gel from January 2005. PATIENTS AND METHODS: All patients undergoing reconstructive breast surgery using the Contour Profile((R)) Becker-35 expandable implant over a two-year period were retrospectively reviewed with respect to indication, implant sizes, inflation details, complications and outcomes.

RESULTS: 36 patients, mean age 48.9 years (r=14-69), received 39 anatomical Becker-35 expanders (three bilaterally). Three quarters of these implants (29) were used for immediate breast reconstruction while the remainder were equally divided between delayed postmastectomy reconstruction (5) and correction of congenital breast asymmetry (5). Half of the patients had simultaneous latissimus dorsi myocutaneous flap coverage of the implants. The median numbers of inflations and deflations needed to achieve the target expansion size and shape were 3 (r=0-7) and 0 (r=0-4), respectively. The mean time from expander insertion to completion of reconstruction was 4.6 months (r=0-13 months). Four patients required surgical intervention for haematoma, implant infection, severe capsular contracture, and palpable rippling. Additionally there were three injection port adjustments, giving a 20% overall revisional surgery rate (8/39 breasts) after a median follow-up of 20 months (r=6-38 months). Four implants (10%) developed significant but asymptomatic rippling. The significant capsular contracture rate was 21% (8/39 breasts), which was related to chest wall radiotherapy.

CONCLUSION: In this short-term study, the Becker-35 expander was successfully used for single-stage prosthetic breast reconstruction with an incidence of early complications comparable to alternative prostheses. Although it has expanded the range of implants available to the breast surgeon, its exact role in reconstructive breast surgery has yet to be established.