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Topic: DIEP Flap surgery

Forum: Breast Reconstruction —

Talk with others facing decisions about whether or not to have breast reconstruction, and if so, what type and when.

Posted on: May 19, 2021 12:40PM

Kimrgonz wrote:

I’m a 14 year BC survivor who underwent a double mastectomy and reconstruction with silicone implants. With an MRI it was discovered that I have a rupture in the implant. I can replace the implants in a simple surgery or undergo the DIEP procedure and never have to worry again about ruptures and replacements. I am a very healthy 59 year old who would rather not have to replace the implants every 10 plus years.Has anyone done the DIEP? Are you pleased with the results? How long was the recovery? I’m really torn about what to do??? Any info would be great. Thx

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May 19, 2021 04:34PM abigailj wrote:

Hi Kimrgonz

I had immediate DIEP recon when I had my BMX last year at 62 so a different situation. I was in surgery around 12 hours, had 2 surgeons who are DIEP specialists working on me. It was a long recovery- had to use a walker a few weeks, couldn’t straighten up totally until a few weeks after, slept in recliner several weeks. I also had some infection and wound healing issues. I also had a good amount of physical therapy to loosen up my torso and massage therapy to treat the scar tissue. BUT now, almost 11 months later I am very happy how I feel physically as well as with the results aesthetically. Please also note I was a former smoker so some circulatory issues and also not very fit so the complications I had are a largely attributable to that.

From reading posts of those who had delayed DIEP though it is still a long surgery and healing process. The most important thing is to have highly skilled surgeons with a lot of experience in doing DIEP and not overdoing thing afterwards and giving yourself time to heal. There’s a lot of good info in the 2018 DIEP thread - I found it really helpful


Dx 1/2020, ILC/IDC, Both breasts, 2cm, Stage IB, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 6/23/2020 Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): DIEP flap, SIEA flap; Reconstruction (right): DIEP flap, SIEA flap

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