Table of Contents
Plastic Surgery International
Volume 2016, Article ID 6085624, 9 pages
Research Article

Bilateral Breast Reconstruction with Abdominal Free Flaps: A Single Centre, Single Surgeon Retrospective Review of 55 Consecutive Patients

1Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Ninewells Hospital and Medical School, Dundee DD1 9SE, UK
2Department of Public Health, Faculty of Medicine, University of Botswana, Gabarone, Botswana

Received 29 January 2016; Revised 20 May 2016; Accepted 5 June 2016

Academic Editor: Nicolo Scuderi

Copyright © 2016 Peter McAllister et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Breast reconstruction using free tissue transfer is an increasingly utilised oncoplastic procedure. The aim was to review all bilateral breast reconstructions using abdominal free flaps by a single surgeon over an 11-year period (2003–2014). A retrospective review was performed on all patients who underwent bilateral breast reconstruction using abdominal free flaps between 2003 and 2014 by the senior author (DAM). Data analysed included patient demographics, indication for reconstruction, surgical details, and complications. Fifty-five female patients (mean 48.6 years [ years]) had bilateral breast reconstruction. The majority (41, 74.5%) underwent immediate reconstruction and DIEP flaps were utilised on 41 (74.5%) occasions. Major surgical complications occurred in 6 (10.9%) patients, all of which were postoperative vascular compromise of the flap. Failure to salvage the reconstruction occurred on 3 (5.5%) occasions resulting in a total flap failure rate of 2.7%. Obesity (>30 kg/m2) and age > 60 years were shown to have a statistically increased risk of developing postoperative complications (). Our experience demonstrates that abdominal free flaps for bilateral breast reconstruction fares well, with a flap failure rate of 2.7%. Increased body mass index and patient age (>60 years) were associated with higher complication rates.