Failed DIEP - Now for Plan B

Hi Ladies

As you’ve probably gathered from the subject header, my DIEP flap has failed following a 16 hour operation where there were some issues with the blood supply. To say I’m gutted is a massive understatement but don’t really want to dwell on the finer details too much for the sake of those awaiting their ops.
I’m just one of the very very unlucky few that this has not worked for :frowning:
The reason for my post is, I am awaiting further surgery to remove the flap and to have a skin graft to cover the gap (this shold be withing the next week). Once this has healed completely (approx 2 to 3 months) my PS is going to carry out the LD Flap recon - which he has assured me will not be a problem.

I wonder if anyone else out there has experienced anything similar as I would love to hear your thoughts - I’m not expecting a massive response due the unusual circumstances I find myself in but this site has helped me massively thoughout my journey so thought I would give it a try.

Take Care all
Sue xxxx

Hi Sue, so sorry to hear that your DIEP failed. You are right it is very unusual but can happen and its one of the things that they talked me through before my Op. I am one of the lucky ones in that my DIEP worked and now 5 months later I am fine and being able to get on with my life. My PS told me also that if mine failed they would do a LD flap it is much easier op so less likely of failure. I just wanted to wish you well and as you say once your healed you be able to move forward again. It is a setback (but only that) you will have your flap and lovely new boob one day soon (and don’t forget you still have that lovely flat tummy as that can’t ‘fail’) Lots of hugs and let us know how you get on xxxx

Hi Saffronseed and thank you so much for your encouraging response, good wishes and hugs :slight_smile:
Yes you’re quite right, looking at the positives, my flat tummy is a definite bonus as is the weight I’ve lost since the op (the hospital food was shocking !)
So pleased your DIEP worked for you and you’re getting on with your life after only 5 months - brilliant :slight_smile:
My op was on 30th March so it’s taken a little while to get to this stage - not helped by my PS going on holiday.
I’ll let you know soon as I get a date for the removal of the flap & skin graft and I’ll keep you updated - thank you again and hugs back to you
Sue xxxx

Hi sue

2 weeks ago I had LD flap recon which unfortunately failed due to the blood vessels being to small, so after 2 days I had to have the recon removed and an implant put in. All seems to be healing well. As you say these are unusual circumstances.

I wish you luck for your future op.

Take care

Gillian xx

Hi Gillian and thank you for your response.

I just want the flap removed as soon as possible - just getting so fed up of continuously changing the horrible dressings and it’s all sooo uncomfortable.
Sorry to moan but I didn’t for one minute expect this outcome, so finding myself in this situation is all a bit of a shock and I certainly wasn’t prepared for this :frowning:

So pleased your situation seemed to have been resolved so quickly after only 2 days - that’s fab. It’s taken 3 weeks for my team to finally admit that the flap had failed !

Good luck for your continued healing Gillian.

Take care
Sue xxxx

Im so sorry for you, I can only begin to imagine how you feel. I had double recon 9 weeks ago, ended up with one diep and one tram due to blood supply and I have some inkling to how to feel as although mine ended up success (apart from big size difference) I ended up back in surgery 5 hours later with blood clots and on watch all follwing day for possible failure - totally demorlised you must be but I have seen lots of ld flaps that are fab, my aunts was amazing, wasnt suitable for me due to lymphoedema in arm but I really hope this works for you xx

Hi Lisa

Thank you for your response and so pleased for you that although you had blood clots, your flap didn’t fail - that’s brilliant.
You don’t really mind going through the long ops, lengthy recovery etc if you have the desired result at the end of it all.
I don’t want to give up after everything I’ve gone through, but just putting my trust in my PS (who has a marvellous reputation)is all I can do and fingers crossed, I’ll end up with 2 boobs instead of one :slight_smile:
Just have a slight concern about your suitability for the LD flap procedure due to lymphoedema in your arm. I havn’t actually been diagnosed with this but do have a very very mild issue with this - so mild that 90% of the time I don’t even notice it.
I’m paranoid now about things going wrong, so I’ll mention this to my PS on my next visit.

Thank you again Lisa and all the best for your continued healing chuck.


HI Sue, I would mention it but I also had more pressing other issue with them trying to do two sides and getting them to match. When I asked about arm recently my new PS said that she hadnt had anyone who’s condition in arm had gotten worse from having op and in fact with tummy op they sometimes opt to mess about under your arm area - I think as long as you keep doing the exercises and keep movement in it it shoudn’t cause a problem.

Good luck with next stage, must be really hard, as you get worried about each op xxx

Aww so sorry to hear your stories girls, it must be a very emotional time when this happens, but keep on going you will get there in the end and i’m sure you’ll be really pleased with the results, my op (if all goes well) is 4 weeks on Thursday! take it easy all of you, Lynn XXX