TUG (Transverse Upper Gracilus) Flap Breast Reconstruction is a procedure whereby the blood vessels, muscle, skin, and fat are used from the upper leg to rebuild the breast. To restore the breast, the flap is then lifted to the chest. The surgeon utilizes the microsurgery to gently reconnect the flap to the chest’s blood vessels.
What to Expect with TUG Flap Breast Reconstruction
TUG Flap Breast Reconstruction is a good option for those who want natural-looking breasts. During this procedure, an incision is created close to the groin in your upper thigh, and an oblong portion of adipose (fat), blood vessels, skin, and muscle is removed and transferred to your chest, where it is molded into the shape of the breast. Under a microscope, the small blood blood vessels that supply the new breast tissue are aligned to the ones in the chest and meticulously reconnected. This typically takes up to 4 hours to complete.
What to Expect After TUG Flap Breast Reconstruction
Following the procedure, you will be sent to the recovery room. The healthcare personnel will check your body temperature, heart rate, and blood pressure. After that, you’ll be transferred to a hospital room. The average length of stay can be up to three days. While recovering, be sure to let someone know when you are not feeling well from the anesthesia, so that medication can be prescribed to you.
Before going home, the surgeon will provide you with recovery advice to follow. During recovery, your doctor will likely advise you to use a compression girdle for up to 2 months. Since surgery will be on four different parts of your body, you may feel worse and recover more slowly than someone who’s had their breasts removed. Incisions will be done on each breast and one on each thigh. Sometimes a lymph node is removed from your armpit simultaneously as well. Therefore, it can take up to a month to heal from the procedure.
It’s critical that you spend a good amount of time recovering. When it comes to rigorous physical activities or exercises, listen to your doctor’s recommendations. Remember to avoid extreme sports, carrying heavy items, and sexual activity, for a month or so.Due to the location of the incision, the healing process may be a little difficult. You will be able to stroll, however, any movement that requires spreading the legs and bending the hips should be avoided. Discuss recovery time with your doctor, as well as how to identify if you aren’t recovering properly.
Are There Other Breast Reconstruction Procedures?
Implant-based breast reconstruction is typically used to create breasts that closely resemble your original breasts prior to a mastectomy. It is a complex procedure that involves reshaping the breasts, using either saline or silicone implants. The implants are placed behind or anterior to your pectoral muscle. A unique tissue is then used to hold the implants in place, which is generally in front of the pectoral muscle. This tissue is eventually replaced with collagen.
In some cases, women may be able to get a breast implant while having a mastectomy. Others may need a two-step procedure that includes the use of a tissue extender prior to the implantation of the irreversible implant. In either case, after surgery, you may feel fatigued and uncomfortable for several weeks.