PAP Flap or TUG Flap

Natural-Looking Breast Reconstruction Results in Austin, TX

A profunda artery perforator (PAP) flap or transverse upper gracilis (TUG) flap at Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery is like the DIEP flap in that no implant is required since your surgeon uses tissue taken from a donor site to achieve breast reconstruction. A PAP flap is a thigh lift flap that takes no muscle and has a well-hidden scar in a different location. While implants ultimately need to be replaced, your own healthy, living tissue used to create a new breast does not.

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Discover whether a PAP or TUG flap from Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery is right for you. Call our office at (512) 815-0123 or send a message online to arrange a consultation.

Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery

  • Known for natural-looking aesthetic results in breast reconstruction and cosmetic surgery.
  • Elected by peers for inclusion in Texas Monthly's Texas Super Doctors®: Rising Stars listing.
  • Reconstructed over 6,000 patients, including more than 2,500 DIEP flap reconstructions.
  • 4.9-star average rating over hundreds of reviews for reconstructive and cosmetic surgery.
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Your PAP Flap / TUG Flap Experience

In a PAP flap, your surgeon removes a flap of skin and fat (no muscle) from your posterior and inner thigh. In a TUG flap, your surgeon removes a flap of skin, fat, and underlying gracilis muscle from your posterior and inner thigh. The loss of this muscle will not adversely affect the function of your leg. Although there are a few patients whose anatomy can sustain a flap without removing the muscle, this is rare and not something that can be determined preoperatively.

Because a TUG flap can result in a higher incidence of lymphedema in the leg, it is only used in cases where patients do not have other donor sites, either due to a thin physique or abdominal scarring from previous procedures such as a tummy tuck. All of your options will be discussed with you in detail during your initial consultation.

A PAP flap is a crescent of fat and skin that is removed from the posterior thigh with its main feeding blood vessel, and can be used to create a living-tissue breast. This flap is sometimes described as the "banana roll" of fat, as it uses the fat roll below the gluteus creases to make a breast. No muscle is removed. The scar is a line along the bottom of the gluteal (buttocks) fold and is well hidden.

Once your surgeon has removed the flap from your upper thigh, they will then draw on their advanced technical skills, extensive experience, and microsurgery training to transfer it to your chest and connect it to blood vessels in your chest wall or the underarm area. This is delicate and intricate work that involves the use of a microscope. Finally, your surgeon will artistically shape the breast to create an aesthetically pleasing result.

As with all surgeries at Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, the goal of a TUG flap or PAP flap surgery is to provide you with a breast that looks and feels natural—a definite benefit of using your own tissue.

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Choose a Plastic Surgeon with a Personal Touch

Our team values patient education, which is why we offer extensive information on our website explaining the reconstructive procedures our surgeons offer, such as PAP flap surgery. Our commitment to sharing information does not stop there; we also believe in using an initial consultation and ongoing conversations to equip every woman who comes to Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery with specific and thorough knowledge about the procedure they choose together.

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Download Our Breast Reconstruction Post-Operative Care Guides

We've compiled detailed post-operative care instructions to best equip our breast reconstruction patients throughout their recovery process. To ensure the best and safest recovery, your plan encompasses appropriate prescriptions and clear directions towards maintaining your comfort to get you back to normal life and activity as soon as possible. Individual patients respond uniquely, and the type of procedure may differ, but these basic guidelines will help you along your journey.

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Discuss PAP flap or TUG flap with Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery in Austin, TX. Set up a consultation by calling (512) 815-0123 or sending a message online.

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