Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Breast Reconstruction For Life: New Plastic Surgery Procedure Gives Hope To Breast Cancer Survivors

Liberate Cosmetic Surgery, the UK's largest network of BAAPS and/or BAPRA accredited cosmetic surgeons, has introduced a pioneering micro-surgery that removes excess fat from the inner thighs to reconstruct the breasts following mastectomy procedures. The new technique, known as a TUG (transverse upper gracilis) Flap gives hope to the thousands of women who suffer the trauma of mastectomy following breast cancer.

Liberate cosmetic surgeon Anita Hazari an expert in the TUG Flap procedure explains. “The TUG Flap uses tissue from the upper thigh, just under the groin crease to reconstruct a naturally shaped breast. Patients get an ‘inner thigh lift’ and the skin and fat with the gracilis muscle is detached from its blood supply in the thigh and re-attached to blood vessels in the chest. The operation was only described five years ago in world medical literature and is a relatively new technique. It takes four hours to perform and has a success rate of 99 per cent."

One in ten women have breast reconstruction following a mastectomy and using a woman's own body tissue for the procedure is relatively common, but flesh is usually taken from the stomach, back or buttocks which can leave unsightly scars and is difficult to mould. Flesh from the thigh is soft and can be molded into a natural breast shape and a nipple is made from excess skin when the crescent flap is coned, the new nipple and areola are tattooed at a later date. The benefits of using your own tissue also means that the reconstruction is for life.

Liberate plastic surgeon, Mr Venkat Ramakrishnan an internationally renowned expert in TUG Flap operations who specializes in aesthetic and reconstructive breast surgery warns, "Don't be tempted into thinking this is the perfect cosmetic surgery operation to create slimmer thighs and larger breasts for normal women. The operation takes 4-6 hours, requires a week's stay in hospital and is costly when compared to a traditional breast implant procedure, but for women who have had a mastectomy this procedure is life changing and restores confidence and dignity."

Victoria Bouck-Standen 32, has a family history of cancer and had both breasts removed following the discovery of a lump. She was one of the first women in the South East of England to undergo the operation and says of her newly reconstructed breasts, "If I put on weight they put on weight and if I lose weight they lose weight! They are nice and soft and natural feeling. I was not in any pain and ten days after the surgery my breasts were completely comfortable"

The TUG Flap costs approx GBP 16,000 and is also available on the NHS for women who have had a mastectomy.

FACTFILE
Liberate is designed as a service which “liberates” the consumer by encouraging access to a cosmetic surgeon from the very first consultation. A belief firmly held by Liberate is that individuals opting for cosmetic surgery should take full control and be confident in their decision.

Without the tools needed to make responsible choices cosmetic surgery can end up costing people financially, physically and psychologically, Liberate aims to give people the power to choose, providing them with a new and safer approach to cosmetic surgery.

For more information, please visit www.liberatecosmeticsurgery.com