Fort Lauderdale, Fla. -- Broward Health Imperial Point (BHIP) is the first hospital in South Florida to offer AeroForm Tissue Expander System for women undergoing breast reconstruction following a mastectomy. This technique represents the first major change in breast tissue expansion in more than 40 years.
“This is another example of the world-class medical service Broward Health provides. Our hospital system is constantly growing and changing in order to remain at the forefront of technology and innovative procedures,” said Beverly Capasso, Broward Health Interim President/CEO.
Each year, more than 100,000 women in the United States have surgery to remove a cancerous breast, [i] with approximately 42 percent opting for reconstructive surgery with an implant. [ii] Many of these women undergo tissue expansion to prepare a space for breast implants.
Research shows that patients using the AeroForm® device completed tissue expansion in an average of 21 days, compared to 46 days for those undergoing saline expansion. [iii] Those who utilized the AeroForm® device also progressed to breast implantation one month faster on average than the saline group.iii
“Our doctors are constantly learning new procedures and exploring new technologies. We are focused on patients and provide quality, compassionate care to the community,” said Alice Taylor, CEO, Broward Health Imperial Point.
The device, which was developed by AirXpanders, is inserted underneath the chest muscle, similar to a saline-filled expander, and activated by a handheld wireless controller. The controller triggers a valve to release small amounts of carbon dioxide to gradually stretch the tissue of the chest wall to make room for a long-term breast implant. The patient activates the device by pushing a button—a technique they can do from home or work to reduce the number of doctor visits. In the past, patients had to return to the doctor repeatedly for saline injections to stretch the tissue.
Once fully expanded, the device is removed and replaced with a long-term breast implant.
“This is a significant step forward for breast reconstruction. It offers patients enhanced comfort and convenience and provides them with a sense of control in their breast cancer recovery,” said Tracey Stokes, MD, a plastic surgeon with Broward Health.
Broward Health Imperial Point is a part of Broward Health, a public healthcare system in Broward County. Broward Health is one of the top 10 largest hospital systems in the U.S. and has provided world-class, quality medical care and top-notch service to the community for more than 75 years.
[i] Susan Komen Foundation.org. Accessed 11/1/17
[i] Morrow, M, et al. Access to Breast Reconstruction After Mastectomy and Patient Perspectives on Reconstruction Decision Making. JAMA Surg. 2014;149(10):1015-1021.
[iii] Ascherman, JA, et al. CO2-based vs. Saline Tissue Expansion for Breast Reconstruction: Results of the XPAND Prospective, Randomized Clinical Trial. Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. December 2016 – Volume 138, Number 6.