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Advanced Reconstructive Breast Surgery: Recovery with a New Normal

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Through its Oncoplastic and Breast Surgery Program, The Rebecca Fortney Breast Center helps women and men rebuild their breasts to a more normal appearance following mastectomy. Our skilled breast and plastic surgeons work together in performing the most advanced techniques in breast reconstruction. Our medical staff is able to provide you with compassionate care, from the pre-surgical discussions of options and decision making through to your surgery and recovery. Not only will you regain confidence and self-esteem, but you'll benefit from good health, restored function and a better quality of life.

Some of the most common surgical procedures that we perform are summarized below.  Please contact The Breast Center with your questions, or to schedule an appointment for a consultation.

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Deep Inferior Epigastric Perforator Flap (DIEP)

The Deep Inferior Epigastric Perforator Flap procedure (DIEP) Flap is one of the most innovative breast reconstruction techniques. This procedure relocates tissue from the abdomen to form a new breast mound, eliminating the need for artificial breast implants. DIEP Flap surgery keeps the abdominal muscles intact, using microsurgical techniques to attach blood vessels in the transplanted skin to blood vessels in the chest. Sparing the abdominal wall musculature may reduce abdominal problems associated with the more traditional techniques, and is useful for physically active individuals who want to preserve their abdominal muscle tone.

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These surgeries involve removal of tissue from other parts of the body to form new, natural-shaped breasts following mastectomy.

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Superior Inferior Epigastric Artery (SIEA)

Like DIEP, the superior inferior epigastric artery (SIEA) procedure involves moving skin and fat tissue from the abdomen to form a new breast. In the surgery, blood vessels in the fat are reattached in the chest, creating a new blood supply to the new breast. The remaining skin in the abdomen is lifted and tightened, giving the patient a toned appearance of a tummy tuck. Since SIEA uses fat and not muscle, a patient avoids some of the discomfort accompanying DIEP.

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Superior Gluteal Artery Perforator (SGAP)

In the Superior Gluteal Artery Perforator (SGAP) procedure, a surgeon removes tissue from the buttock area to form a new breast. This surgery is useful for patients who do not have enough excess abdominal tissue for this purpose, and gives them the appearance of a buttock lift surgery.

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Transverse Upper Gracilis (TUG)

The Transverse Upper Gracilis (TUG) surgery takes excess tissue from the inner thigh to form a new breast for mastectomy patients. The procedure is useful for patients who have already had a tummy tuck or buttock lift, or who are athletically trim and who don’t have adequate skin and fat to perform the surgeries mentioned earlier.

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Transverse Rectus Abdominis Myocutaneous (TRAM)

One of the most commonly performed surgeries, Transverse Rectus Abdominis Myocutaneous (TRAM) flap. In the procedure, skin, fat, and muscle will be moved from your tummy up to your chest to create a breast mound. Most women have enough tissue in their tummy area to create a new breast. But if there is not enough tissue, a small implant can be placed to round out the size of the new breast. TRAMs can be performed in two distinct ways -- as a free (detatched) tissue flap, or as a pedicle (attached and tunneled) flap of tissue. The reconstructed breast will not look and feel exactly the same as your natural breast, and you will need additional surgery to create a nipple and areola.

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Latissimus Dorsi Flap

In this procedure, skin and muscle are removed from your back and are used to form a new breast mound. The blood vessels remain connected to their original location, which can be helpful for patients with wound healing problems. The latissimus dorsi flap is most commonly combined with insertion of a breast implant, which gives the surgeon more options to make the new breast aesthetically appealing.

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Tissue Expansion

This procedure is often used when patients do not have enough skin to support the previously mentioned breast reconstruction methods. In tissue expansion, surgeons use the patient’s remaining skin with a breast implant to create a new breast.

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Implant Reconstruction

Some patients prefer breast reconstruction with an implant made of saline or silicone, inserted with or without tissue expanders. There are several options to consider using this format, including use of nipple reconstruction and tattooing. 

For additional information concerning these procedures and answers to other questions you may have, please contact The Breast Center at 443-481-5300.

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Followup care

<< Cancer Survivorship.

Patients completing treatment for breast cancer often feel more scared then relieved. They wonder “What’s next?,” “How am I being monitored for recurrence?”, “How do I manage these symptoms?” and “What is my ‘normal’ ?”

There are more than 13 million cancer survivors in the United States and this number is predicted to grow to approximately 22 million by 2020.

The Anne Arundel Medical Center has developed an approach for patients following treatment as part of its new Cancer Survivorship Program.

The goals of our breast cancer survivors program include:

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