Experiences with Breast Reconstruction (Flap)

Breast reconstruction can be done after a mastectomy procedure due to breast cancer. Breast tissue flap procedures can be done using tissue from your tummy, back, thighs, or buttocks to rebuild the breast. The two most common types of tissue flap procedures are the TRAM flap (transverse rectus abdominis muscle flap) which is taken from the lower abdomen area, and the latissimus dorsi flap which is taken from the upper back. After tissue flap procedures there are two scars; one scar is where the tissue is taken and one is on the breast. Scars from breast reconstruction fade over time but will never go away completely. There is a risk of differences in size or shape of the breasts and risk of pain from the surgical sites.

Women that opt for tissue flap procedures have experienced many different outcomes. There is no way to predict how exactly your surgery will turn out. However, many WhatNexter’s give the same advice: consider all your options, think about getting a second opinion, communicate well with your surgeon, and make the decision that you feel most comfortable with. Sometimes it is good to ask others what decisions they have made concerning breast reconstruction. There are endless questions and many different combinations of breast reconstruction. Ask questions and post firsthand insights below.

  1. 4 months ago
    zippyloula's Avatar

    Breast Reconstruction (Flap)

    Procedure or Surgery

    At a later procedure had the Arreola tattooed on.

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    Went as Expected: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Agree
    0 Comments
    • Las928
    • Experience with Invasive (Infiltrating)...
    7 months ago
    Las928's Avatar

    Breast Reconstruction (Flap)

    Procedure or Surgery

    Still in recovery but overall very happy with results

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    Went as Expected: Disagree
    Minimal Recovery: Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Agree
    0 Comments
    • JNW
    • Experience with Invasive (Infiltrating) Du...
    10 months ago
    JNW's Avatar

    Breast Reconstruction (Flap)

    Procedure or Surgery

    Right now I'm in that 24 to 48 hour most painful stage, but hopefully I'm ending this part of the journey and will find my new norma...

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    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Side Effects: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Disagree
    0 Comments
  2. 10 months ago
    readytoheal's Avatar

    Breast Reconstruction (Flap)

    Procedure or Surgery

    I had the DIEP flap procedure for reconstruction. Not as bad I as I though it would be. 8 weeks out and healing nicely.

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    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Side Effects: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Neutral/NA
    0 Comments
  3. 11 months ago
    cheypeggy's Avatar

    Breast Reconstruction (Flap)

    Procedure or Surgery

    Had to have the TRAM flap on the left side because of the scar tissue on left side.

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    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Agree
    0 Comments
    • Alisq
    • Experience with Triple-Negative Breast C...
    11 months ago
    Alisq's Avatar

    Breast Reconstruction (Flap)

    Procedure or Surgery

    It was a long recovery, however I am happy it is working out for me so far. I didn't realize that this is a staged procedure. I wi...

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    Went as Expected: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Neutral/NA
    0 Comments
  4. 11 months ago
    smipigfarm's Avatar

    Breast Reconstruction (Flap)

    Procedure or Surgery

    I knew the surgery would be hard. But I woke up and felt like I had been run over by a train. The train got smaller every day thou...

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    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
    0 Comments
    • Rin
    • Experience with Invasive (Infiltrating) Du...
    11 months ago
    Rin's Avatar

    Breast Reconstruction (Flap)

    Procedure or Surgery

    My surgery began in Sept 2015, mastectomy and tissue expander which resulted in a serious surgical infection and a 2nd surgery in No...

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    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Disagree
    0 Comments
    • Schultzy
    • Experience with Breast Cancer
    12 months ago
    Schultzy's Avatar

    Breast Reconstruction (Flap)

    Procedure or Surgery

    This was an 8 and 1/2 hour surgery. Recovery was rough,but pleased with final results

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    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Disagree
    0 Comments
    • fredntan
    • Experience with Mixed Tumors, Breast ...
    over 1 year ago
    fredntan's Avatar

    Breast Reconstruction (Flap)

    Procedure or Surgery

    I had great care after my DIEP at Methodist in San Antonio. Excellent pain control. felt healing to get my breasts back. wasn't easy

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    Went as Expected: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Disagree
    0 Comments
    • peachpoppy
    • Experience with Invasive (Infiltrat...
    over 1 year ago
    peachpoppy's Avatar

    Breast Reconstruction (Flap)

    Procedure or Surgery

    2/9/16 - Had a fat grafting procedure, once again, to my left DIEP side to increase size for symmetry and to fill in holes left from...

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    Went as Expected: Strongly Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Neutral/NA
    0 Comments
    • akid4fr
    • Experience with Breast Cancer
    over 1 year ago
    akid4fr's Avatar

    Breast Reconstruction (Flap)

    Procedure or Surgery

    Done at the same time as mastectomy.

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    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Side Effects: Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Neutral/NA
    0 Comments
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