Breast Reconstruction with Autoderm Beverly Hills

Autoderm is a one-of-a-kind technique developed by Dr. Schwartz as an alternative to acellular dermal matrix (ADM) (Alloderm, FlexHD). ADM is a cadaveric skin graft (from a donor) where all the cells have been removed, so it is basically a dermal, or collagen, graft that your body grows in to. It is necessary when someone does not have enough muscle to cover an implant or tissue expander completely. However, if a woman has a large breast with a lot of skin, Dr. Schwartz has developed this technique to utilize all of the breast skin and, in some cases, spare the underlying muscle. This allows for very little pain and also decreases the chance of animation deformity (implant moving when chest is flexed). An adjustable saline implant is placed during the initial surgery and is expanded over a period of time in the office. Since he only uses skin, which is numb from the mastectomy, he is able to expand a lot more rapidly than can traditionally be done and sometimes is able to put the permanent silicone implant prior to other treatments, if needed, such as radiation or chemotherapy. You also have the choice of leaving the saline implant and just removing the port, which may be done in the office. This procedure minimizes pain and the chance of implant movement. Also, the only scar is typically “hidden” at the bottom of the breast crease and not across the breast. Furthermore, if there are complications, Dr. Schwartz can still use your local muscle rather than a distant flap.

If a woman chooses to not undergo breast reconstruction, the Autoderm procedure may still be utilized to give a chest mound that prostheses may be worn over.

Overview

Autoderm is a one-of-a-kind technique developed by Dr. Schwartz as an alternative to acellular dermal matrix (ADM). However, if a woman has a large breast with a lot of skin, Dr. Schwartz has developed this technique to utilize all of the breast skin and, in some cases, spare the underlying muscle.  This allows for very little pain and also decreases the chance of animation deformity (implant moving when chest is flexed).  An adjustable saline implant is placed during the initial surgery and is expanded over a period of time in the office.  Since he only uses skin, which is numb from the mastectomy, he is able to expand a lot more rapidly than can traditionally be done and sometimes is able to put the permanent silicone implant prior to other treatments, if needed, such as radiation or chemotherapy.  You also have the choice of leaving the saline implant and just removing the port, which may be done in the office.  This procedure minimizes pain and the chance of implant movement.  Also, the only scar is typically “hidden” at the bottom of the breast crease and not across the breast.  Furthermore, if there are complications, Dr. Schwartz can still use your local muscle rather than a distant flap.

If a woman chooses to not undergo breast reconstruction, the Autoderm procedure may still be utilized to give a chest mound that prostheses may be worn over.

About the Procedure  

Autoderm was created by Dr. Schwartz to meet the needs of breast reconstruction patients.  It is an extremely safe and effective technique.  As the patient’s own skin is used, which remains vascularized, the graft quickly adheres to the existing tissue.  Tissue expansion is accomplished with a saline implant, which may be left in permanently or swapped out to a softer silicone implant.  The expansion is generally fast, and, if desired, a second operation to exchange for a permanent silicone implant can be scheduled rather quickly in some circumstances.  This is advantageous to those women who will require radiation or chemotherapy (which normally beings about eight weeks post-op).

Fast Facts on Autoderm Breast Reconstruction


Autoderm Breast Reconstruction FAQs

What is Autoderm?

Autoderm is a breast reconstruction procedure utilizing the patient’s own vascular tissue. The natural graft allows Dr. Schwartz to safely place larger implants, often faster, than when using other types of dermal graft.

Where does the tissue for Autoderm come from?

Autoderm utilizes a patient’s own skin to reconstruct the breast. Due to this fact, the patient will need to have excess skin around the breast to be a successful Autoderm candidate.

Who is a good candidate for a procedure using Autoderm?

The ideal candidate for Autoderm will be a woman in overall good health, with a large amount of excess skin surrounding the breast. The procedure works well for women who will require radiation after their mastectomy, as well.

Why is Autoderm beneficial over other grafting methods?

Autoderm allows for a faster tissue expansion, since it spares the pectoralis major muscle, and can mean earlier placement of the implant. The surgical procedure is faster, and holds a smaller incidence of complications, than procedures using an acellular dermal matrix.

Is there scarring after the use of Autoderm?

While a scar does occur after the positioning of Autoderm, this is normally well-concealed along the lower portion of the breast.

Who created Autoderm and why?

Dr. Schwartz developed Autoderm as an alternative to acelluar dermal matrix, which he noted in his experience to have an undesirably high complication rate. The acellular dermal matrix is not vascularized, therefore takes longer to incorporate into the natural breast tissue. Autoderm on the other hand, is vascularized, and easily bonds with existing tissues.

Why choose Dr. Schwartz for your breast reconstruction?

Dr. Schwartz has over 10 years of experience performing plastic and reconstructive procedures. He has assisted hundreds of woman through their breast reconstruction after a mastectomy. Dr. Schwartz’ use of Autoderm ensures patients they will receive the safest and most aesthetically pleasing breast reconstruction available today.

Where are procedures using Autoderm performed?

Dr. Schwartz works out of the The Roxbury Institute in Beverly Hills, as well as several other Los Angeles area hospitals.

What are the risks associated with Autoderm?

Autoderm is has a much lower compilation rate than similar procedures performed using acellular dermal matrix for breast reconstruction. Should the rare complication occur, however, it may include tissue necrosis, poor wound healing, and excessive scarring.

Our Location

Jaime S. Schwartz, MD, FACS

Board Certified Plastic Surgeon

310.340.6372