(855) 687-6227

1329 Cherry Way Dr, Suite 700,
Gahanna, OH 43230, USA

Overview

The DIEP flap (Deep Inferior Epigastric artery Perforator) is an ideal option for breast reconstruction surgery because it can produce very natural results using your tissue. Skin, muscle, and blood vessels are taken from the abdomen and shaped into a breast mound that best fits the shape and size you desire.

Dr. Ergun Kocak, Dr. Pankaj Tiwari and Dr. Santosh Kale are considered the top board-certified plastic surgeons in Ohio. They have over 20 years of combined microsurgery experience and perform more than 250 successful breast reconstructions each year.

Insurance Coverage and Cost

DIEP flap reconstruction in Columbus, Ohio, is covered by all health insurance providers under the Women’s Health and Cancer Rights Act of 1998.

This typically includes all associated pre-op appointments and aftercare. Contact us to learn more about the overall process and next steps.

Ideal Candidate

Most patients are suitable candidates for reconstruction using a DIEP flap. Previous abdominal surgeries, such as a hysterectomy and C-section, are typically not an issue. However, some operations, including tummy tuck and hernia repair with mesh, can be limiting.

Other factors, such as smoking and excessive body weight, may pose challenges but are not considered absolute contraindications to surgery. For patients who do not have an adequate amount of tissue on the lower abdomen, other perforator-based flaps (such as the GAP, TUG, or PAP flap) or breast implants are alternative options.

DIEP Flap Reconstruction vs. Other Techniques

The DIEP flap procedure is only one of several reconstructive options. Here are some key differences to help you decide which technique is appropriate for you.

DIEP Flap vs. Other Flap Techniques

Compared to other flap methods, reconstructed breasts made from a DIEP flap end up feeling and looking more natural due to the presence of fat and absence of muscle in the replacement of breast tissue.

DIEP Flap vs. Implant Technique

Saline or silicone breast implants are an option for women who do not have much body fat present in the abdomen. They are also the preferred breast reconstruction method if you wish to have immediate reconstruction but still require follow-up cancer treatments such as chemotherapy.

Testimonial

"Dr Tiwari Thanks for being one of the good guys I pray God blesses you and your family for blessing others I know I will be sending other women with BII your way PS your staff rocks too..."
"Hi Dr Kocak I just wanted to say thank you for putting this broken girl back together Youve always been so kind and patient with me - and always enjoy your sense of humor Thank you for coming to Marietta and taking great care of me You and Tiwari were the best - the staff still talks about ..."
"Dr Tiwari Thanks for the tip on using Cayenne Id love to have the literature on that because Ill put it on my blog May help someone else too..."
"Dr Tiwari - So I researched for months interviewed 4 surgeons before I watched on of your on-line videos thought at the time the idea of traveling so far seemed extreme to have surgery after talking to you over the phone for the first time my mind was at east about all of it and I ..."
"After being diagnosed with Breast Cancer for the third time I underwent a double mastectomy and unfortunately developed lymphedema in my arm This complication was due to the fact that I had 12-13 lymph nodes removed the second time I had breast cancer The swelling in my arm was so bad I was ..."

The Procedure

DIEP flap reconstructions are performed under general anesthesia and take 6 – 8 hours to complete.

First, skin and fat tissue with active blood vessels are taken from the abdomen. The blood vessels are often contained in a pedicle and are reattached to blood vessels on the chest with the help of microsurgery. Once blood flow is restored to the flap, it is reshaped accordingly and attached with dissolvable sutures around its perimeter.

Nipple and areola reconstruction follows as requested. The donor area is then closed with dissolvable sutures.

diep flap breast reconstruction ohio

Recovery

You will wake up with a surgical bra and a compression garment on your midsection. DIEP flap reconstruction requires a 3 – 4 day stay in the hospital, and you may return home once cleared by your doctor.

You need to wear your compression garments until swelling and bruising go down to a manageable level, usually after 6 – 8 weeks. Avoid long showers for one week. Driving and work may be resumed after two weeks. More strenuous physical activities such as the gym or heavy lifting may continue after 4 – 6 weeks, or when you are allowed to by your physician.

Results

If you follow your post-op instructions, your scars will fade into thin white lines over 6 – 8 weeks, easily hidden beneath your underwear. You will find a new sense of balance and confidence thanks to your reconstructed chest, as well as a thinner and slimmer midsection due to the removal of fat and skin.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is DIEP Flap the same as Tummy Tuck?

No. However, the DIEP flap is usually taken from the same areas a tummy tuck would also affect, resulting in a smaller and firmer midsection in addition to reconstructed breasts.

2. What if breast cancer returns after I had undergone breast reconstruction surgery?

Your surgeon will recommend that the flap be removed and reattached at a later time, so that you may undergo chemotherapy to remove any traces of cancer.

According to research, however, DIEP flap procedures are not linked to a higher cancer recurrence rate compared to mastectomy alone.

3. Can breast reconstruction restore sensation to the breasts?

DIEP flap reconstruction can, but the procedure is highly technical and intensive to perform.

Request Your Consultation

To learn more about diep flap reconstruction, you can schedule an appointment online or you can call 855-687-6227

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*The information available on this page was created to educate our patients. It is not an alternative for a formal consultation with a board-certified plastic and reconstructive surgeon. Individual results vary per patient. For more information, we strongly recommend scheduling a consultation with our doctors.