Mastectomy is a surgery for the removal of breast tissue affected by cancer. It usually involves removal of the breast tissue, nipple and areola. Skin-sparing mastectomy involves the removal of all of the breast tissue including the nipple, yet preserving as much of the breast skin as possible.
The procedure is usually performed under general anesthesia. Your surgeon makes a skin incision and removes the nipple and areola, leaving behind a natural skin pocket. The pocket may be immediately filled with your own body tissue or a breast implant, or a tissue expander may be inserted, which maintains the space and size of the breast until reconstruction at a later stage.
Skin-sparing mastectomy offers improved cosmetic outcome compared to breast surgery, as the breast does not have a large scar and there is less discrepancy in the shape of the breasts as seen with mastectomy. However, as with any procedure, skin-sparing mastectomy may involve certain risks and complications, which include infection, swelling at the site of operation and bleeding.