The latissimus dorsi flap is enjoying resurgence in interest for breast reconstruction. A technique is described in which the pedicled latissimus dorsi flap (the whole muscle and overlying fat is harvested) is molded to resemble the shape of a breast. This enhances the shape and projection of the reconstructed breast, and prosthesis is no longer required. The disadvantages of the technique are the longer scar that is required to harvest all the muscle and overlying fat, and that there is still some limitation to the size of the breast that can be reconstructed. Harvesting the extended latissimus dorsi flap also leaves a contour defect on the back.
Four patients underwent breast reconstruction with pedicled latissimus flaps that were augmented with overlying fat. The muscle was folded on itself at the level of the inframammary fold and shaped into a cone to provide shape and projection.
From the Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Groote Schuur Hospital and University of Cape Town, South Africa.
Received Oct 12, 2001, and
in revised form Jan 22, 2002.
Accepted for publication Jan 22, 2002.
Address correspondence and reprint requests to Prof Hudson, Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, OMB H53, Groote Schuur Hospital, Observatory, 7925 Cape Town, South Africa.
Hudson DA. Autologous anatomic breast implant: molding the latissimus dorsi flap.