Breast Reconstruction Using Your Own Natural Tissue
Natural-tissue Flap Reconstruction - Long Island, New York
Though breast reconstruction with implants is an effective method that provides pleasing results, some women opt for an alternative treatment – natural or autogenous tissue flap reconstruction. At our Long Island, New York plastic surgery practice, our team of surgeons is experienced in the latest techniques in reconstructive microsurgery. We are well versed in both implant breast reconstruction and autogenous flap reconstruction, and can determine which method would best suit your needs. For many women, natural tissue reconstruction is appealing, because the need for a breast implant may be avoided. To inquire further about the procedures summarized below, please contact Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, PC today.
DIEP, SIEA and TRAM Free Flap Breast Reconstruction
In the DIEP (deep inferior epigastric perforator) flap technique, skin and fat from the lower abdomen are harvested while the abdominal muscle tissue is left in place. To accomplish this, the deep inferior epigastric vessels, which supply blood to the newly reconstructed breast, are teased out from the rectus muscle through small incisions. In SIEA (superficial inferior epigastric artery) flap reconstruction, no incisions are made in the abdominal muscle; instead, the transferred tissue is based on the superficial inferior epigastric vessels, allowing for an easier post-operative recovery. In cases where the DIEP or SIEA vessels are not ideal, a small portion of rectus muscle may be needed to carry the blood supply of the lower abdominal wall tissue as a TRAM (transverse rectus abdominus myocutaneous) free flap. Learn More about DIEP, SIEA and TRAM Free Flap Reconstruction.
TUG and PAP Flap Breast Reconstruction
If you have a slender physique and have insufficient abdominal tissue for a DIEP or TRAM free flap reconstruction, then the TUG flap (transverse upper gracilis) or PAP flap (profunda femoris artery perforator ) may be potential alternatives for breast reconstruction. In this natural tissue flap reconstruction technique, fatty tissue is harvested from the inner thigh, either with or without the gracilis muscle, while preserving the remaining thigh muscles and potentially improving thigh contour, much like a thigh lift. This tissue is then transferred as a microsurgical free flap for the purpose of breast reconstruction. Learn More about TUG and PAP Flap Reconstruction.
GAP Flap Breast Reconstruction
Another alternative to DIEP and TRAM free flap reconstruction is GAP (gluteal artery perforator) flap reconstruction. In this technique, skin and fat are harvested from the buttocks. As with DIEP flap reconstruction, perforator vessels from either the superior or inferior gluteal blood supply are teased out through small incisions in the gluteal muscle. This prevents the need to remove muscle tissue. Once the harvesting is complete, the patient is turned over so that the breast reconstruction can take place. Learn More about GAP Flap Reconstruction.
Latissimus Dorsi Flap Breast Reconstruction
Latissimus dorsi (LD) flap breast reconstruction involves elevation of the LD muscle with its overlying back skin, and repositioning of the flap to provide soft tissue coverage over a tissue expander or breast implant. For some women, LD flap breast reconstruction can be performed at the time of mastectomy resulting in a more natural breast appearance as compared to an implant alone. The LD flap may also be indicated for patients with wound healing difficulties after implant reconstruction, or for patients with a history of radiation treatment that are ill suited to other autogenous procedures. In some patients, including men who require mastectomy, breast reconstruction can be accomplished with an LD flap alone, without the need for an implant. Learn More about Latissimus Dorsi Flap Reconstruction.
Pedicled TRAM Flap Breast Reconstruction
With the availability of microsurgical techniques in breast reconstruction (described above), the pedicled TRAM flap, which sacrifices the entire rectus muscle, is almost never used in our practice. The pedicled TRAM flap reconstruction involves the creation of a breast shape using the rectus abdominus muscle along with lower abdominal wall skin, and fat. To accomplish this, the muscle is tunneled underneath the upper abdominal skin through an incision made along the lower abdomen. The overall effect of the procedure is a natural-looking breast reconstruction and flatter midsection, at the expense of the entire rectus muscle. Learn More about TRAM Flap Reconstruction.
Contact the Plastic Surgeons of the
New York Breast Reconstruction Associates at Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, PC
Natural tissue or autogenous flap breast reconstruction provides natural-looking results and avoids many of the risks associated with breast implants. Our surgeons have performed thousands of breast reconstructions and can help you determine if you are a candidate for natural tissue breast reconstruction. To schedule a consultation, please contact our Long Island, New York plastic surgery office today.