Mastectomy with or without immediate implant reconstruction has similar 30-day perioperative outcomes

J Plast Reconstr Aesthet Surg. 2014 Nov;67(11):1515-22. doi: 10.1016/j.bjps.2014.07.021. Epub 2014 Jul 31.


Background: Immediate breast reconstruction (IBR) using implants remains a favorable reconstructive option in breast cancer. Understanding the added risk associated with IBR continues to enhance the risk counseling process and management of these patients.

Methods: Women undergoing mastectomy alone and mastectomy with tissue expander (TE) were identified in the ACS-NSQIP datasets. Specific complications examined included any, wound, medical complications, and deep infections. Bivariate and multivariate analyses were performed to identify predictors of outcomes, and propensity-matching was used to compare cohorts.

Results: A total of 42,823 patients who underwent either mastectomy alone (N = 30,440) or mastectomy with immediate TE placement (N = 12,383) were identified. Notable independently associated perioperative differences between mastectomy and TE patients included: race (P < 0.001), comorbidity burden (P < 0.001), year of surgery (P < 0.001), ASA physical status (P < 0.001), functional status (P < 0.001), inpatient procedures (P < 0.001), bilateral procedures (P < 0.001), BMI (P < 0.001), age (P < 0.001), and lymphadenectomy (P < 0.001). IBR using TE was not found to be associated with greater risk of wound (3.3% vs. 3.2%, P = 0.855), medical (1.7% vs. 1.6%, P = 0.751), or overall (9.6% vs. 10.0%, P = 0.430) complications. TE placement was associated with higher rates of deep wound infections (2.0% vs. 1.0%, P < 0.001) and unplanned reoperations (6.9% vs. 6.1%, P = 0.025). Additionally, the rate of 30-day device loss was 0.8% in patients receiving reconstruction. Multivariate conditional (fixed-effects) logistic regression analysis failed to demonstrate significantly associated independent risk of wound, medical, or overall complications with the addition of TE.

Conclusions: Undergoing IBR with TE placement does not confer added risk of wound, medical, or overall morbidity relative to mastectomy alone based upon propensity-matched 30-day complication rates in 15,238 patients from the 2005-2011 ACS-NSQIP datasets. These findings further confirm the safety profile of prosthetic-based IBR.

Level of evidence: Prognostic/risk category, level II.

Keywords: ACS-NSQIP; Breast reconstruction; Complications; Immediate implant reconstruction; Risk.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Breast Implants*
  • Comorbidity
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Mammaplasty / methods*
  • Mastectomy*
  • Middle Aged
  • Postoperative Complications / epidemiology
  • Propensity Score
  • Risk Factors
  • Tissue Expansion / methods*
  • Treatment Outcome