A retrospective study conducted by Northern Westchester Hospital in Mt. Kisco, New York found that women who have breast reconstruction with implants and an acellular dermal matrix (ADM) have better results than those who have implant reconstruction without an ADM. (The study did not study results of women who had other types of breast reconstruction.)
Researchers examined the results of 881 reconstructions with breast implants over a five-year period. Results were divided into two groups: those whose reconstruction included AlloDerm or FlexHD and those who did not. Study authors concluded that the use of either ADM product with breast implants resulted in several advantages:
· more natural-looking, symmetrical breasts
· superior contour
· better implant position
· fewer surgical complications
Other studies suggest that use of an ADM with breast implants lowers the risk of capsular contracture in women who have breast reconstruction.
AlloDerm or FlexHD are ADMs: sterile tissue substitutes made from donated human skin that has been stripped of its cellular materials, but retains collagen and other proteins. ADMs are often used in breast reconstruction with expanders or implants to provide additional support to the skin, cover otherwise exposed edges, and to maintain position. AlloDerm was initially developed to replace skin of burn victims, and is also used for hernia repair and facial reconstruction. FlexHD® Pliable™ was more recently developed in response to plastic surgeons who requested a more pliable ADM specifically for breast reconstruction.
Source: Michael H. Rosenberg, David A. Palaia, Anthony C. Cahan, et al. “Breast Reconstruction With or Without Human Acellular Dermal Matrices: A Single-Clinic, Review of Esthetic Outcomes and Risk Factors for Complications.” American Journal of Cosmetic Surgery (2014) Vol. 31, No. 1, pp. 7-17.