DIEP Flap

If you're considering breast reconstruction after mastectomy, you may be interested in natural breast reconstruction but know that some techniques have drawbacks.

Dr. Ravi Tandon often recommends the advanced DIEP flap method to restore the size, shape, and symmetry of your breasts and produce outstanding results.

Find out why the DIEP flap is considered the state-of-the-art technique in breast reconstruction…

An Advanced Microsurgical Technique with Superior Results

Deep inferior epigastric perforator surgery, or DIEP flap surgery, is an advanced type of natural breast reconstruction. During the procedure, tissue from the lower abdomen is used to rebuild the breast after a mastectomy. This muscle-sparing technique offers substantial benefits over earlier reconstructive techniques such as the TRAM flap method. Dr. Tandon can perform the DIEP method at our Metairie office, serving New Orleans, LA. Our team at Tandon Plastic Surgery is dedicated to breast reconstruction, with a strong emphasis on natural reconstructive techniques.

What Are the Benefits of Muscle-Sparing Reconstruction?

Conservative

Unlike older methods such as the TRAM flap, DIEP flaps don't remove any muscle. This flap method preserves abdominal muscle, maintains core strength, and reduces the risk of hernias.

Natural-looking

Because DIEP flap reconstruction uses your own tissue, your new breast will look and feel much like a natural breast. It will move with your body, change shape with weight fluctuations, and be soft and realistic.

Slimmer stomach

The removal of fat and skin from the lower abdomen creates similar results to a tummy tuck. After the procedure, patients benefit from a fully reconstructed breast as well as a flat, toned stomach.

Long-lasting

Patients who have a DIEP procedure can enjoy results that last for years without requiring additional treatments. Unlike breast implants, there is no need for additional surgeries and no risk of implant rupture.

An added benefit?

DIEP flap
DIEP flap surgery creates similar results to a tummy tuck.

Committed to Helping Women Feel Confident Again

Dr. Tandon has specialized training in microsurgery techniques in addition to his extensive background in plastic and reconstructive surgery. The DIEP flap procedure is highly advanced and requires a meticulous eye and attention to detail. Not every plastic surgeon–or even breast surgeon–can perform it. If you're looking for a passionate and skilled doctor well-versed in various flap techniques, schedule a consultation or call our Metairie office, serving greater New Orleans, at:

(504) 455-1000

Dr. Ravi Tandon using surgical microscope
Dr. Tandon uses advanced microsurgical techniques.

"He Made Me Feel Confident and Beautiful" 5-Star Reviews from Our Patients

1

Kate Leggio

2020

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I met with Dr. Tandon 4 days post a chemo treatment to discuss breast reconstruction options. I was not looking my best (bald, glass, bags under my eyes, and sweatpants) so I walked in feeling self conscious. Dr. Tandon was amazing. He took his time explaining everything and what he thought was best options for me. He made me feel confident and beautiful on a day I felt the worst. I cannot wait to see my results in a few months!

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1

Adrienne Thomas

2019

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Dr. Tandon's skill rebuilt my body after my cancer surgery, but his caring and compassionate (and humorous) attitude kept my outlook on life on track. I have never been a negative person, but cancer can make you question so much. Dr. Tandon never let me doubt that i could make it through. I would recommend him to everyone who is facing my situation, or who wants a physician who really cares about the total you. Thank you, Dr. Tandon, for everything!

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Am I the Right Candidate?

During your initial consultation at our office, serving greater New Orleans, Dr. Tandon will discuss the benefits of the DIEP flap method and determine your candidacy for natural breast reconstruction. While this method can offer significant benefits for qualifying candidates, it is not right for everyone. Your plastic surgeon will discuss your options with you and consult with your physician to determine if the DIEP flap, alternative natural reconstruction methods, or implants are better for you. We will generally weigh several factors:

Good overall health

It is essential to be cancer-free and in good overall health to ensure the success of your procedure following a mastectomy. Certain medical conditions can affect healing and raise the risk of complications.

Adequate tissue

Patients need enough tissue around the abdomen for a successful DIEP flap. Women who are on the thinner side may qualify for Stacked DIEP flap℠, which is a similar technique that doesn't use as much tissue.

Realistic goals

It's important to have realistic expectations for your surgery and outcome goals. A reconstructed breast will not be the same as your old breast. However, using your own tissue provides the most realistic results.

Blood vessels

Patients with small abdominal blood vessels may not be good candidates for the procedure. Dr. Tandon will make an assessment and may recommend an alternative breast reconstruction method or implants.

Previous surgery

Patients who have had abdominal surgery such as a colostomy or tummy tuck may not be good candidates for a DIEP flap. Other parts of the body, such as the thigh or gluteal region, may be suitable donor areas.

An Advanced Muscle-Sparing Technique

DIEP flap illustration
Unlike older methods, DIEP flap breast reconstruction preserves abdominal muscles and reduces the risk of hernias.

What to Expect during Treatment

Dr. Tandon will conduct an in-depth consultation and walk through your medical history
General anesthesia is administered to ensure your comfort
An incision is made along the lower abdomen in order to create a flap
Fat, skin, and blood vessels are removed from the lower abdominal region
Dr. Tandon will tighten the underlying tissue to ensure smooth results and close the incision
The flap is transported to the chest area and the blood vessels are carefully attached to provide circulation to the new tissue
The tissue is sculpted into a new breast that matches the size and shape of your natural breast
The incision in the chest area is closed

What to Expect after DIEP Flap Reconstruction

Roughly three months after the initial surgery, patients at our New Orleans-area office may choose to return for a touch-up procedure to improve their breast's symmetry and overall contour. Dr. Tandon can also perform body contouring treatments at this time to complement your results.

Patients may opt for nipple reconstruction after they are fully healed from DIEP flap breast reconstruction. This procedure is optional, but it can provide the finishing touches and conclude your breast cancer reconstruction journey. You can choose from two options: 3-D tattooing or nipple reconstruction using your own tissue.

What Are the Disadvantages of Flap Surgery?

Longer recovery

Because DIEP flap is more complex, it requires an extended recovery period. Though it is faster than older techniques, patients typically spend three nights in the hospital compared to one night for implants.

More scarring

After breast reconstruction surgery, patients will have at least two scarring sites: one in the abdominal flap area, and one in the chest area. Breast implant patients have one surgical scar.

Is DIEP Flap Reconstruction Covered by Insurance?

According to The Women's Health and Cancer Rights of 1998 (WHRCA), health insurance companies are required to cover mastectomy and breast reconstruction procedures. We are happy to assist you throughout the process if you have any questions or concerns.

Additionally, Dr. Tandon is a strong advocate for breast cancer patients. He was personally involved in the passing of a state law requiring hospitals to inform patients of all their breast reconstruction options.

"Dr. Tandon and His Staff Really Care about You"

1

Theresa Nava

2019

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I had a double mastectomy in January 2018 ,because of breast cancer .I was Sent to Doctor Tandon by Doctor Alfered Colfry my breast oncologist sugeron . Doctor Tandon listened carefully to my concerns reassuring me all the way through this difficult time ,he is very knowledgeable ,skillful plastic sugeron.Doctor Tandon an his staff are kind an caring for there patients .i am very happy with my results I highly recommend him as a sugeron .

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1

Judith Corcoran

2020

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Great doctor! Dr. Tandon and his staff really care about you and give you all the facts for you to make the best decision for you!

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Ravi Tandon, M.D.

Dr. Ravi Tandon is one of the most sought after plastic surgeons who is highly skilled and has trained in the latest breast reconstruction techniques. He is affiliated with various plastic surgery organizations: 

  • American Society of Plastic Surgery
  • American Society for Reconstructive Microsurgery
  • Louisiana Society of Plastic Surgeons

If you are exploring breast reconstruction during, immediately after, or long after your mastectomy, our compassionate team can help. To learn more about your options, request a consultation online or call our practice at (504) 455-1000.

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