Women who have a breast removed due to cancer can opt to have surgery to rebuild the breast mound. DIEP flap breast reconstruction surgery is a safe and effective surgical procedure that provides natural looking results as it uses the patients own tissue. Performed by an experienced plastic surgeon, the procedure can provide great aesthetic results. It can also help resolve conditions such as loss of breast volume and congenital breast abnormalities.
The DIEP Flap Procedure
In DIEP flap surgery, the skin, fat and blood vessels from the patients lower abdomen are used as donor tissue. The plastic surgeon first performs a CT scan in order to evaluate the flow of blood in the abdomen to determine whether the blood vessels required for the surgery are intact and can be used reconstructing the breast. The surgery involves removing the flap with the skin, fat and blood vessels and transferring it to the chest.
DIEP flap breast reconstruction offers natural-looking results. The donor site which is the abdomen benefits with a slimmer appearance. Following the reconstruction procedure, the nipple and areola will be created. One of the greatest advantages of this surgery is that no muscle removal is involved. The abdominal muscles are kept intact. As the incisions are made on the lower abdomen to remove the skin flap, the scars remain hidden by the skin folds.
DIEP flap reconstruction surgery offers the following benefits:
- Long-lasting results
- No complications such as implant rupture, infection or capsular contracture
- The recreated breasts look and feel natural
- As there is no removal of any abdominal muscle. As abdominal strength is preserved, there is no risk of abdominal hernia or weakness
- Provides the benefits of a tummy tuck, that is, a trimmer tummy as fatty tissues are removed from the abdominal area
- Can be performed in conjunction with breast removal surgery
Women who do not have adequate abdominal tissue or who have scarred tissues may not be ideal candidates for the treatment. This procedure is ideal after a double mastectomy, provided the patient has sufficient tissue for reconstructing both breasts. Full recovery can take up to weeks and usually patient can return to work after six to eight weeks after the surgery.
DIEP flap breast reconstruction is performed by skilled and experienced plastic surgeons at reliable AAAASF accredited plastic surgery centers. They also ensure dedicated follow-up till full recovery.