How Does Resensation Work?
In the past, sensation represented a significant missing factor in the success of breast reconstruction. While patients could enjoy the physical shape of their newly-restored breasts, their previous mastectomy meant that their new curves had no sensation. Not only could this be frustrating in their intimate relationships, but in some cases, patients with numb breasts could even suffer injuries as a result of their lack of feeling – for example, leaning over a hot stove and burning them.
Fortunately, this issue can now be overcome thanks to an innovative new surgical technique known as Resensation.
What is Resensation?
Resensation is a new surgical technique that enables your surgeon to reconnect the nerves in your existing breast tissue, that were cut as part of your mastectomy, to the new nerves in the tissues that are being used to recreate your new breast shape. This is made possible thanks to avance nerve graft.
About advance nerve graft
Avance nerve graft is a processed human nerve allograft that is designed specifically for the surgical repair of peripheral nerve discontinuities. Its 3D scaffold can be used to bridge the gap between your existing cut nerves and the nerves in the new tissue, supporting regeneration that will eventually lead to nerve fibers re-joining and providing restored nerve sensation to the new breast tissue.
Resensation using avance nerve graft is performed as part of the autologous breast reconstruction process. This is where the new breast/s are formed using skin, fat, and muscle from another area of the body, rather than using an implant.
How soon can I undergo Resensation?
Understandably, you may be keen to achieve breast sensation as soon as possible. How soon you will be able to have your breasts reconstructed and Resensation carried out will depend on your individual circumstances and, in the case of surgery following cancer treatment, the recommendation of your doctor. Some patients may be able to have their reconstruction and Resensation surgery immediately following their mastectomy while others may need to wait a while. If you choose not to have your reconstruction straight away, you can always have it months or even years down the line.
Can I still have Resensation if I choose breast implants rather than autologous reconstruction?
Since implants are created from artificial material, it isn’t possible to have Resensation if you choose this solution to recreate the shape and size of your breasts. However, if you later choose to have your implants removed and replaced with your body’s natural tissue, you may then be a good candidate for Resensation. You’ll be able to discuss this option with your cosmetic surgeon.
How long will it take before I start to feel sensation in my breasts again?
It’s important for patients to be aware that Resensation doesn’t produce immediate results. Nerves regenerate very slowly, and this means that you should expect it to be at least several months before you start to notice any improvement in breast sensation. Initially, this may be sporadic episodes of tingling, shooting pains, hot/cold sensitivity, or other unusual feelings. These should continue to become stronger for up to two years, at which time, maximum improvement should be reached.
Patients who choose Resensation as part of a breast reconstruction procedure typically enjoy an improvement in their physical and emotional wellbeing, greater self-esteem, and body image and feel overall much happier with their quality of life.
If you’d like to find out more about Resensation, please speak to our friendly and discreet cosmetic surgery team.