"Increasingly, women facing mastectomy prefer new breasts sculpted from their own skin and fat, thereby avoiding the problems that often occur with implants," says Dr Chrysopoulo. Breasts shaped from living tissue have a natural look and feel that can't be achieved using implants or temporary prostheses. "While most patients prefer the Deep Inferior Epigastric Perforator (DIEP) flap technique which uses a woman's lower abdominal tissue, it is a technique that may not be an option for those who have had previous tummy tucks, who don't have adequate abdominal fat, or who prefer not to scar their abdomens. TUG flap surgery is a viable option for these women; a way to restore their natural breasts with excellent results."
Both the TUG and DIEP flap procedures are complex, technically demanding microsurgical procedures requiring special skill and experience. During the TUG procedure, surgeons transplant a flap of skin, tissue and muscle from a woman's upper thigh to her chest. The process has distinct advantages compared to other types of natural tissue breast reconstruction: thigh tissue has superior contour, shape and projection; loss of the muscle does not inhibit an individual's mobility or function; scarring is not easily visible, and the procedure produces a cosmetic thigh lift as well as a new breast.
"TUG flap surgery allows a woman to come out of the operating room the same way she went in," says Chrysopoulo. "With nice-sized natural breasts in place." The TUG flap is an excellent post-mastectomy option for women who have mastectomy to either treat or prevent breast cancer.
Candidates for the TUG are women who:
• have small to medium-sized breasts.
• want to avoid an abdominal scar.
• lack sufficient abdominal tissue for DIEP breast reconstruction.
• have had a previous tummy tuck or other abdominal surgery.
PRMA board-certified surgeons routinely offer both reconstructive and cosmetic breast procedures, and perform more than 400 microsurgical breast reconstructions annually for patients from Texas and across the U.S. PRMA surgeons are in-network for most U.S. insurance plans. Visit www.prma-Enhance.com or contact 800-692-5565 to schedule a consultation or for more information about the TUG flap or any other reconstructive breast procedure.