J Korean Soc Plast Reconstr Surg.  2011 Jul;38(4):401-407.

Long-term Result of Nipple Reconstruction Using Skate Flap after Breast Reconstruction

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Korea University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. yesanam2@korea.ac.kr
  • 2Department of General Surgery, Korea University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.

Abstract

PURPOSE
A number of flap for nipple reconstruction have been well described in the literature. However, most of these techniques do not permit the reconstruction of a projecting nipple and all are hampered to some extent by long-term loss of nipple projection. The objective of this study is to evaluate the long-term result and clinical efficacy of nipple reconstruction using skate flap technique after breast reconstruction.
METHODS
A retrospective chart review was carried out on 23 patients who underwent 25 nipple reconstructions. In those patients with greater than 10 mm nipple projection, reconstruction with skate flap and full-thickness skin graft and/or tattooing was performed. Maintenance of nipple projection was then carefully assessed over one-year follow-up. The following factors were analyzed: type of breast reconstruction, type of areola reconstruction, follow-up period, decrease in nipple projection, complication, and whether secondary nipple reconstruction was necessary and/or performed.
RESULTS
Breast reconstructions were performed in 17 patients with free transverse rectus abdominis musculocutaneous flap, 3 patients with extended latissimus dorsi musculocutaneous flap, and 3 patients with expander and implant. The mean follow-up after nipple reconstruction was 17 months. Mean loss of projection were 17.0 +/- 13.99%, 25.0 +/- 12.70%, 30.0 +/- 12.57% and 30.8 +/- 12.49% at 3, 6, 9 months and over one year, respectively. The greatest decrease in projection was noted in the first 3 months following surgery.
CONCLUSION
These results indicated that nipple reconstruction with skate flap showed about 70 percent of the projection achieved over one year postoperation. Therefore, the skate flap may be a reliable method of nipple reconstruction in those patients with greater than 10 mm nipple projection.

Keyword

Nipple reconstruction; Skate flap; Breast reconstruction

MeSH Terms

Breast
Female
Follow-Up Studies
Humans
Mammaplasty
Nipples
Rectus Abdominis
Retrospective Studies
Skin
Tattooing
Transplants
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