Enter Zipcode:

Or call 877-409-8830

Breast Reconstruction: DIEP Flap Method

A mastectomy can be a traumatic experience for any woman. Luckily, there have never been more options for a mastectomy patient to restore her breasts to their former size and shape. DIEP Flap Breast Reconstruction Surgery is currently the most advanced type of breast reconstruction available.

DIEP Flap Breast Reconstruction is one of several varieties of transplant reconstruction, which is when a flap composed of fat, skin, and arteries is taken from another part of the body and inserted into the breasts. DIEP Flap Surgery in particular specifically utilizes deep inferior epigastric perforators (DIEPs) located on the abdomen. This location is ideal because the tissue surrounding the belly button is characteristically similar to the composition of the breasts. Once the transplant is done, the tissue is shaped into a breast and microsurgery is done to reconnect the blood vessels to keep them alive.

Women without sufficient tummy fat may be prime candidates for GAP (gluteal artery perforator) flap reconstruction instead of DIEP flap. Fat, skin, and arteries for GAP flap reconstruction are taken from the buttocks instead of the tummy. Like DIEP Flap surgery, there is no transplanting of muscle.

Advantages of DIEP

The primary advantage of DIEP Flap Surgery is that, unlike older methods of breast reconstruction—such as TRAM Flap Reconstruction—DIEP Flap surgery leaves the muscle beneath the flap intact. An incision is made into the muscle, but this is done to grant access to blood vessels, not to lift out any muscle tissue. Leaving the muscle intact has numerous benefits, such as reducing abdominal weakness, reducing the risk of hernia, and reducing post-operative pain and dependence on pain relievers.

Another advantage is that the surgery done to the abdomen is akin to a mini tummy tuck and provides patients with the benefit of a slimmer midsection along with the breast reconstruction.

Compared to breast implants, DIEP affords the patient less risk for complications. While breast implants are considered safe, any surgery that implants foreign material into one’s body raises risks. One such risk of breast implants is capsular contracture. This complication occurs when the capsule formed by the body around the implant shrinks, contracting the capsule and resulting in deformation of the breast.

Downsides

Not every aspect of DIEP Flap Breast Reconstruction is peachy. One negative of the DIEP procedure is a longer hospital stay. Because the procedure involves blood vessel transplants, it is important that the doctor monitor the tissue to ensure that it has an ample amount of blood flowing through it to prevent it from dying.

Unfortunately, finding a clinic that offers the DIEP flap breast reconstruction might be difficult. Due to the fact that the DEIP is still a new procedure, and a complex one at that, there are few doctors who have a substantial amount of experience with it. Still, given the benefits of DIEP Flap Breast Reconstruction, it is reasonable to expect that more and more clinics will offer the procedure in the near future.

To further discuss the potential benefits of DIEP Flap Breast Reconstruction Surgery, book a consultation with a qualified doctor. Check out our network of breast reconstruction surgeons to find a provider near you.

 

CALL US FOR A CONSULTATION AT
877-409-8830

Available 7 Days a Week

* = Required Fields
First Name*:
Last Name*:
Email*:
Please provide at least one phone number
Home Phone:
Work Phone:
Cell Phone:
Zip/Postal Code*:
My Interest*:
I want to consult with multiple specialists:
Follow Us: