Understanding the DIEP Flap Procedure

Plastic Surgeon proudly serving Beverly Hills, Hollywood & Santa Monica areas of California

Woman after DIEP flap breast reconstruction Today, patients requiring breast reconstruction have a variety of options including the use of implants and the use of one’s own tissue.  Dr. Jay Orringer offers the DIEP flap as an excellent possible option. This technique transfers the tissue that would normally be discarded with a tummy tuck and uses it to create a new breast mound. It involves microsurgical expertise to re-attach the blood vessels that allow for the health of the transplanted tissue.

The end result can be the most natural and long-term durable option for breast reconstruction and an improvement in abdominal contour that resembles that of a tummy tuck. Unlike an implant, a successful DIEP flap reconstruction does not require replacement over the course of the patient’s life.

Who is a Potential Candidate for the DIEP Flap Technique?

Patients who might particularly benefit from this approach include those who have a chest wall that has been damaged by radiation and those who have failed implant reconstructions due to:

  • Previous infection
  • Recurrent capsular contracture (formation of tight scar tissue around an implant)
  • Thin tissues, often from multiple previous implant procedures
  • Patients who have considered a tummy tuck, but now require a breast reconstruction, might be pleased with this option, as well.

Because the breast often contains considerable fat, a technique that replaces fat often feels and looks more natural than an implant.

How is it Different from other Breast Reconstruction Options?

The DIEP flap technique differs a great deal from older TRAM flap approaches which involve the transfer of considerable muscle. In this technique, great effort is made to spare the abdominal wall muscle, while transferring skin and fat. An implant reconstruction may still be an excellent option, particularly in thin patients who lack excess skin and fat of the abdominal wall. It is also used for patients who prefer the rounder look of an implant and in those who do not wish to have surgery at a second site.

Dr. Orringer suggests that your surgeon discuss a variety of options with you, including both implants and the use of your own tissue. Multiple factors, including your overall health, the nature of your disease, your body build, and personal preference should be weighed in the decision-making process. 

Schedule a Consultation with Dr. Jay Orringer

If you wish to discuss DIEP flap or implant breast reconstruction options, a consultation with Dr. Jay Orringer is an excellent opportunity to gain valuable information regarding this. Please call 310-273-1663 to schedule your consultation.

Dr. Orringer believes that education is a very important aspect of your decision-making process, and he offers individualized breast reconstruction consultations in his Beverly Hills Office. He serves patients in Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, Los Angeles, and Hollywood, California, as well as nationally and internationally and he truly considers it a privilege to be part of your healthcare team.

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Please contact Dr. Jay Orringer for more information, or to schedule a consultation.

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