Reconstruction surgery using your back with or without implant

LD (Latissimus Dorsi) Flap and Extended/Autologous LD Flap

The LD flap procedure involves moving tissue from your upper back, called a flap. The flap is made up of skin, fat, muscle and blood vessels. It is tunnelled with its blood supply attached under the skin below the armpit to the front of the chest. This can provide added protection for an expander/implant and additional skin following mastectomy.

Sometimes, if the breast volume required is small the muscle and fat alone can create a breast mound without the need for an implant – this is called an extended/autologous LD.

There are some important factors for you to think about when deciding on a LD reconstruction with expander/implant:

  • Your implants are unlikely to last a lifetime, and you are likely to need additional operations in the future to replace/exchange the implants.
  • You may experience complications with breast implants such as rupture, pain, capsular contracture (scar tissue around the implant), infection and a poor cosmetic result. This means that implants may change shape overtime and the cosmetic appearance may change.
  • When the chest muscle (pectoralis major) is lifted to cover a tissue expander or implant, you may experience muscle twitching or contracture over the implant.

Procedure diagram

See photos of procedures

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