Autologous Breast Reconstruction (Using your own tissue)
Latissimus Dorsi Muscle Flap
Like the TRAM flaps, this procedure uses muscle, in addition to skin and fat, to reconstruct the breast.
The latissimus dorsi muscle (the fan-like muscle that connects from your lower back to your arm) and some of the overlying skin and fat are used from underneath the shoulder and from the back of the chest wall.
As the skin and muscle of the latissimus dorsi flap may have insufficient volume for a desired breast reconstruction, a breast implant sometimes is placed under the reconstructed skin and muscle to more completely fill out the tissue.
Pedicled TRAM (Transverse Rectus Abdominis Muscle) Flap
Like the above flaps, the abdominal skin and fat is used for breast reconstruction. The rectus abdominus muscle (belly “six pack”) on one side is taken around the blood vessels to preserve them. The muscle is turned or folded on itself and the flap is passed under the chest wall skin up into the chest to provide blood flow for the new flap.
Breast Reconstruction FAQ’s
Q) Will my insurance cover breast reconstruction surgery?
A) Medical necessities and insurance coverage make each situation unique. Most insurance companies will cover not only the initial breast reconstruction but also any additional procedures in either breast throughout the rest of a breast cancer patient's lifetime.Cases involving procedures such as tissue expanders and implants or pedicle TRAM flaps may be covered as in-network benefits. The office staff is very familiar with the insurance companies and their issues. If necessary, our office will spend significant amounts of time working with our patients and their insurance providers to minimize any out-of-pocket costs. Please call our office to review your situation.
Q) How long after the surgery will the nipple be reconstructed and tattooed?
A) The nipple is usually reconstructed three months after the initial surgery and can be tattooed one month after reconstruction. This can be either be done by a medical tattoo specialist or a permanent makeup artist.
Q) How long after the initial consultation can surgery be scheduled?
A) Scheduling your surgery can begin on the day of consultation, and will be coordinated with your general breast surgeon. Surgery is usually schedule one to two weeks after we meet with you.
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