TRAM/DIEP Flap Breast Reconstruction

Free Flap Breast Microvascular Reconstruction “DIEP/muscle sparing TRAM”

Breast reconstruction is a physically and emotionally rewarding procedure for a woman who has lost a breast to cancer or another condition.

Following a mastectomy, the goal of breast reconstruction is to replace the chest wall deficit with a soft, natural looking breast silhouette. This can in turn, dramatically improve a woman’s visual appearance, self-image, and outlook on life.

Breast reconstruction can either be performed at the same time or a later time following a mastectomy. Immediate reconstruction is performed immediately after the mastectomy. The main advantage of this type of procedure is that the woman does not have to submit to a flat chest wall because the first stage of the reconstruction has already been initiated. A delayed reconstruction is done at a later time to allow for adequate healing or other procedures that may need to be completed before the reconstruction. Such procedures might include chemotherapy or radiation.

It is important to be educated on the different techniques of breast reconstruction surgery. Such would include using the patient’s own tissue via various types of tissue flaps, and/or by the use of an expander/implant.

A tissue flap is a section of skin, fat, and muscle, which is relocated from a donor area of the body such as: the abdomen with a TRAM/DIEP flap or the back with a Latissimus muscle flap. These flaps can be augmented with implants if necessary. Alternative flaps are offered on an occasional basis when donor sites for the more common flaps are not suitable.

The breast expander implant technique utilizes a fluid-filled device that is surgically implanted under the remainder of the chest wall tissue. The expander is periodically enlarged until the desired breast volume and location is achieved and a new breast silhouette is created. The expander is then replaced with a rubber-shelled implant filled with either saline or gel.

Breast reconstruction is a critical, decision-making process that encompasses the patient, her overall medical condition, her breast shape and size, her lifestyle, as well as her goals and objective from the reconstruction.

Before & After Images

The ideal candidate for breast reconstruction would be:

  • Healthy, emotionally stable woman
  • Able to cope well with your diagnosis and treatment
  • Someone who has a positive outlook and realistic goals for restoring your breast and body image

Why Choose Dr. Chahin?

Dr. Chahin prides himself in providing his patients with an environment of safety, comfort and care along with a high level of skill and expertise in the field of plastic surgery. Over 20 years of surgical experience has allowed him to build his practice in such a way that you will feel at ease and confident throughout your entire journey. Dr. Chahin strives to achieve natural looking, attractive results with a minimal recovery time and high patient satisfaction. With utilizing the most advanced, safest and least invasive techniques available in today’s sophisticated world of plastic surgery, he is specialized in providing the ultimate refinement of his skills in body contouring, facial aesthetics and breast sculpturing surgical techniques. Dr. Chahin provides his patients with an individualized plan, highlighting his exquisite attention to detail and personal touch. Through kindness, sophistication and exceptional quality of work, Dr. Chahin and his experienced team of staff members will go above and beyond to ensure their patients’ profound confidence and satisfaction.

“Thank you for all of your patience and help, I appreciate you and all of the work you do for the office and your patience. Thank you for always being there whenever I had questions. Everything you do, you do with a welcoming spirit.”

“Dear Dr. Chahin,
We wanted to extend a heartfelt thank you for your fantastic care of my daughter. Your quality and integrity as a surgeon and more fundamentally as a human being.”

“Dearest Doc,
Every day is a special day for your patients to have you! How lucky and grateful we all are for all of your expertise and care you give to each person.”

– Thank You, Ann

Final Thoughts

It is essential to recognize that breast reconstruction is an elaborate, multi-staged surgical treatment with an artistic touch, and requires a long-term commitment.

Dr. Chahin will discuss with you these procedures, and what is mutually felt to be the best method of treatment to aid in achieving optimal results for you.

FAQ - TRAM/DIEP Flap Breast Reconstruction

Generally the hospital stay following TRAM/DIEP flap breast reconstruction will be anywhere from 4-7 days. Initially following surgery, the patient will be admitted to the ICU for close monitoring of the flaps.

TRAM (transverse rectus abdominis myocutaneous flap) Breast Reconstruction and DIEP (deep inferior epigastric perforator flap) Breast Reconstruction are two different techniques that will result in tissue being moved from one area to another. Generally, the patient will undergo a tummy tuck procedure and the skin and tissue removed will then be used to re-create a breast.

Most patients will undergo a minimum of two separate procedures. Depending on the volume that the patient is attempting to achieve, a breast implant can be used at a later time to aid in increasing the volume should the patient desire that, however, it is certainly not necessary.

The average recovery following TRAM/DIEP Flap breast reconstruction is anywhere from 6-8 weeks.

The main difference between TRAM and DIEP Flap Breast Reconstruction surgery is the TRAM uses the abdominal muscles to aid in the reconstruction while the DIEP flap which is a more specialized newer procedure spares most of the abdominal muscles and fascia.