Delayed DIEP flap reconstruction is a sophisticated surgical procedure used in breast reconstruction following mastectomy. Unlike immediate DIEP flap reconstruction, which is performed simultaneously with mastectomy, delayed DIEP flap reconstruction is a staged approach, usually done weeks or months after mastectomy. Dr. Salzberg and Dr. Jacobs may recommend delayed DIEP flap reconstruction in NYC after an evaluation if deemed more suitable than an immediate reconstruction.
Understanding Delayed DIEP Flap Breast Reconstruction
What is Delayed DIEP Flap Reconstruction?
Delayed DIEP flap reconstruction is a specialized technique for breast reconstruction for individuals who have undergone mastectomy. Unlike immediate DIEP flap reconstruction, which occurs concurrently with mastectomy, the delayed approach involves two distinct surgeries.
During the first stage, a flap of tissue and fat is harvested from the patient’s abdomen, typically utilizing the deep inferior epigastric perforator (DIEP) blood vessels. These are dissected and preserved, and the tissue is shaped to create a breast mound. This initial surgery is crucial as it ensures adequate blood supply to the newly formed breast tissue. After this initial procedure, patients usually have a temporary tissue expander or implant inserted to maintain breast shape.
The second stage occurs several months later, allowing time for the patient to heal. The tissue expander is replaced with the previously harvested DIEP flap, which provides a natural-looking and feeling breast reconstruction with the patient’s own tissue. This staged approach offers numerous benefits, including reduced risk of complications, improved cosmetic outcomes, and a more flexible timeline for patients to make informed decisions about their reconstruction.
- Reduced risk of complications compared to immediate reconstruction
- Improved cosmetic outcomes
- Preservation of abdominal muscle function
- Enhanced postoperative recovery time
- Flexibility for patients to make informed decisions
- Utilizes the patient’s own tissue for reconstruction
- Natural-looking and feeling breast reconstruction
Immediate vs. Delayed DIEP Flap Reconstruction
Immediate DIEP flap reconstruction involves performing the surgery with the mastectomy. While it minimizes the number of surgeries and reduces overall treatment time, it can be more challenging for patients who may need to undergo additional treatments, like radiation therapy, which could potentially affect the reconstructed breast. Immediate reconstruction can also have a higher risk of complications due to the altered blood supply in the surgical area.
Delayed DIEP flap reconstruction follows a staged approach, with the initial surgery creating a flap from abdominal tissue, followed by a separate surgery to replace the tissue expander with the flap. This allows for more flexibility and can be a preferred choice for patients who require radiation therapy or those who want additional time to consider their options. Delayed reconstruction often results in a more natural appearance and decreased complications. Schedule a consultation to learn more about delayed DIEP flap reconstruction in NYC.
Ultimately, the choice between immediate and delayed DIEP flap reconstruction depends on individual patient needs, preferences, and medical considerations and should be discussed thoroughly with your plastic surgeons at the New York Group for Plastic Surgery.
Candidates for Delayed DIEP Flap Reconstruction
Candidates for delayed DIEP flap reconstruction are typically individuals who have undergone mastectomy for breast cancer and wish to pursue breast reconstruction. If you desire a more natural-looking and feeling breast reconstruction using your own tissue, have sufficient abdominal tissue for the flap, and are willing to undergo a staged surgical approach with a healing period between surgeries, delayed DIEP flap reconstruction may be suitable for you.
Get Started with Delayed DIEP Flap Reconstruction in NYC
With nearly three decades of dedicated service in the New York area, the New York Group for Plastic Surgery specializes in personalized surgical treatments tailored to your unique needs and goals. Our reach extends to the Hudson River Valley, Northern New Jersey, Eastern Pennsylvania, and Western Connecticut. To learn more about the possibilities of immediate or delayed DIEP flap reconstruction in NYC, we invite you to request your consultation. Connect online or call us at 888-912-1279 (New York City) or 917-970-1897 (Tarrytown).