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The IGAP (Inferior Gluteal Artery Perforator) Flap is an advanced surgical technique for breast reconstruction, where the surgeon takes excess skin and fat from the lower buttock. This usually results in a well camouflaged scar.
Oftentimes, women are concerned about the pain or discomfort associated with this procedure. Ample tissue is left in the buttock for comfort when sitting. Women with ample buttock tissue, sagging buttock, or sparse abdominal tissue are ideal candidates.
Until recently, IGAP and SGAP were not recommended unless patients were not candidates for the use of abdomen area tissue. However, reconstructive outcomes have demonstrated excellent and comparative results from harvesting tissue from the buttock.
Past surgical options that used the lower buttock took both fat and muscle. While these procedures sometimes produced good cosmetic results, they often led to problems with the sciatic nerve in the back of the leg. By relocating just skin and fat and leaving the adjoining muscle undisturbed, the risk of complications is significantly less.
For women who need reconstruction in both breasts, both the SGAP or the IGAP can be performed bilaterally at the time of mastectomy.