Reconstruction Latissimus Flap

Latissimus flap breast reconstruction uses skin, fat and muscle (latissimus dorsi) from the back beneath the shoulder blade area. The tissue is brought around to the chest to create a new breast. If latissimus flap reconstruction is performed with a mastectomy ("immediate reconstruction"), the flap portion of the surgery won't begin until the mastectomy is completed. Following the mastectomy, the patient is turned onto the side or stomach and the flap harvest begins. A section of skin, fat and muscle is tunneled to the front of the chest to create the new breast. The patient is then turned onto her back to complete the shaping of the new breast.

Most breast cancer survivors who have had a complete or partial mastectomy (removal of all or some of the breast tissue and nipple) are candidates for this procedure. Ideal candidates should be cancer-free and coped well with a previous treatment and diagnosis. Patients with significant chronic diseases may be unable to tolerate complex transfers. Patients need to have a positive outlook and realistic goals.

The typical cost for breast reconstruction with latissimus flap ranges from $6500-$30,000. This price doesn't include anesthesia or operating room fees. The final cost also depends on any necessary medical tests, the surgeon’s level of expertise, the geographic location of the procedure and if any other procedures are performed at the same time.

The procedure leaves a scar on the mid-back region below the shoulder blade. Patients who undergo breast reconstruction should expect to feel tired and sore in the days after surgery. The surgeon will most likely insert drains in the breast area to remove excess fluid from the surgery site. These drains, along with any stitches, remain in place for 1 to 2 weeks. Patients may experience pain to varying degrees in the back area and under the arm for about 2 to 6 weeks. It takes approximately 3 to 6 weeks to recover and resume normal activities. The results of the procedure are long lasting and can be considered permanent.

Latissimus Dorsi Flap Breast Reconstruction

Latissimus Dorsi Flap Breast Reconstruction

submitted on   Tue Sep, 22, 2015 by Frank Isik, MD     
Breast reconstruction is a surgical procedure often performed on female patients who have had a mastectomy. While many of these patients are able to have a breast implant reconstruction, there are some women who need to seek an alternative method of breast reconstruction. One of the best...