- Question from Peaches: What are the advantages and disadvantages of reconstruction using back muscle?
- Answers - Maurice Nahabedian The back muscle, also known as the latissimus dorsi flap, can provide an excellent method of breast reconstruction. This technique has the advantage of being very reliable and is most useful for women who are not good candidates for abdominally based flaps. It often requires the use of an implant in order to create a breast of sufficient size. I typically use this flap in about 4 to 5% of my reconstructions. However, there are others around the country who use this method almost exclusively.
- Marisa Weiss, M.D. Why is there so much variability around the world from plastic surgeon to plastic surgeon regarding the options s/he presents? For example, in Pennsylvania, I am not aware of any surgeon who is doing the DIEP procedure. Why is this?
- Maurice Nahabedian Most surgeons will tend to perform reconstructions that they learned during their years of training. Over the years, newer techniques have evolved that are more complicated, but many surgeons are reluctant to perform some of these more complicated techniques. I think that all of these reconstructive options are capable of providing excellent outcomes. I think that as long as a surgeon is comfortable with the method he or she uses, then a patient will be well served by that surgeon.
The Ask-the-Expert Online Conference called Breast Reconstruction featured Maurice Nahabedian, M.D. and Marisa Weiss, M.D. answering your questions about different techniques in breast reconstruction, the pros and cons of implants and body tissue transfers, when you might want to reconstruct, and many more issues related to rebuilding your breast/s after breast cancer surgery.
Editor's Note: This conference took place in November 2003.
The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of Breastcancer.org. A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.
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