Preparation Instructions

Breast Reconstruction Patient Preparation Instructions

When you plan your upcoming breast reconstruction after undergoing mastectomy in New Orleans, you will feel more comfortable and confident with the process if you take the time to ensure that you meet the day with a prepared mind and a healthy body. The following general recommendations help patients achieve both of these goals and, ultimately, help ensure a positive outcome for their procedure.

Breast Reconstruction Nutrition

Begin increasing your protein intake a few weeks before surgery to build up both your strength and your tissues. Eat high-quality proteins, such as fish, poultry, eggs, nuts, and seeds. High-fiber foods (whole grains, vegetables, fruits, and legumes); calcium-rich foods (nuts, fruits, some leafy greens, molasses, and small amounts of dairy products); and foods containing essential fatty acids (some nuts, seeds, or vegetable oils) are also helpful.

Try to avoid a lot of dairy products, sweets, and baked goods, as well as highly saturated, fatty foods, such as fried items, heavy meats, and cured meats. Your diet can usually be a little lighter a few days before surgery, emphasizing more fruits, vegetables, and liquids. This will help ease the stress on your digestive system. Avoid stimulants, such as coffee, and sedatives, such as alcohol, prior to elective surgery.

Exercise Before Reconstructive Breast Surgery

Exercising before surgery will help ensure that your body is as fit as possible before your procedure. If you are already exercising, keep up the good work. If not, start slowly introducing exercise into your daily activities. Exercise does not need to be strenuous to be beneficial; in fact, a 15-minute walk is far better than not exercising at all.

Quit Smoking Before Surgery

If you are a smoker, now is the time to quit. Not only will you be healthier in the long run, but your surgical outcome will be improved. Your body needs a healthy circulatory system at the time of your breast reconstruction surgery. This precaution will also make your lungs healthier and aid your recovery from anesthesia. Since some of the negative effects of cigarette smoking result from nicotine, you must also avoid nicotine patches or nicotine chewing gums.

Medications to Avoid Before Surgery

Certain medications must be avoided prior to surgery, as they may increase bleeding. Make sure to inform us about what medications you take regularly. For at least two weeks before your breast reconstruction surgery, do not take aspirin or other medications that contain acetylsalicylic acid (Excedrin, Anacin, etc). Also discontinue any other anti-inflammatory pain medications (e.g., Motrin, Advil, Naprosyn, etc.), as these affect bleeding and may compromise your recovery.

Some patients require steroid therapy for pre-existing medical problems, such as asthma. These medications can affect wound healing and increase the risk of infection after surgery, so please inform us if you are currently taking or have recently taken steroid medications. We take every precaution to minimize your surgical risk, so we will assess the necessity of slightly adjusting your doses at the time of your surgery.

General Risks of Breast Reconstruction Surgery

During your pre-operative visits to our office, we will take the time to address each of your questions regarding your upcoming breast reconstruction surgery, along with any associated risk. Should you have further questions before your procedure, please do not hesitate to contact us so that we can discuss them fully prior to your surgery.

Consultation Request

To receive a consultation, request your appointment online and schedule your visit during one of the select times our surgeons have set aside exclusively for Web visitors.



Many of our patients fly in from all over the world. We have perfected the “fly-in patient” protocol, making it virtually possible for all prospective patients. Fly in alone or with loved ones, and we will walk you through a process that will ensure complete care and a comfortable, pleasant experience.