Elaine Sassoon, MD, a plastic and reconstructive surgeon at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, will be spending part of the Christmas holiday in Beijing to teach Chinese physicians a breast-reconstruction technique that uses the patient’s own tissue.

Sassoon will demonstrate the procedure, called in-the-crease IGAP inferior gluteal artery perforator) technique, which was pioneered by Bob Allen, MD, of New Orleans, La.

The reconstruction procedure begins with an incision in the patient’s buttock to remove a portion of skin and tissue. The muscle is left undisturbed, reducing the risk of nerve damage and helping retain the body shape. The buttock tissue is later reshaped to form a new breast for the patient.

According to Sassoon, the mastectomy and reconstruction can take place on the same day.

[new.edp24.co.uk, December 4, 2006]