The combined transverse upper gracilis and profunda artery perforator (TUGPAP) flap for breast reconstruction

Pedro Ciudad, Michele Maruccia, Georgios Orfaniotis, Hui Ching Weng, Thomas Constantinescu, Fabio Nicoli, Emanuele Cigna, Juan Socas, Pornthep Sirimahachaiyakul, Stamatis Sapountzis, Kidakorn Kiranantawat, Shu Ping Lin, Gou Jen Wang, Hung Chi Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Surgical options for breast reconstruction include alloplastic and autogenous reconstructions. In autologous cases where the abdomen is not a suitable primary donor site, secondary donor sites such as the thigh or buttock are considered. The aim of this report is to describe a novel approach, the combined transverse upper gracilis and profunda artery perforator (TUGPAP) flap, aimed at medium to large volume breast reconstruction, with a single donor site used per breast. Methods: Between January 2011 and June 2013, 32 consecutive unilateral immediate breast reconstruction cases were performed using free flaps. In nine cases, patients had previously undergone abdominal surgery, therefore abdominal flaps were excluded and TUGPAP flaps were performed. The TUGPAP flap consisted of the combination of two well-described flaps: the transverse upper gracilis (TUG) and the profunda artery perforator (PAP) flap. All TUGPAP flaps were based on two pedicles: the ascending branch of the medial circumflex femoral artery (MCFA) for the TUG component, and the profunda artery perforator itself for the PAP component. Results: The mean size of the harvested skin paddle was 28.6 × 8 cm2 (range, 27 × 7 cm2 to 30 × 9 cm2). The average length of the TUG flap pedicle was 7 cm (range, 6–8 cm) and the PAP flap pedicle was 9 cm (range, 8.5–10 cm). The flap survival rate was 100% with no re-exploration, and no partial flap loss. Post-operatively there was one case of persistent donor site seroma, which was managed conservatively. Conclusion: With appropriate patient selection and surgical technique the TUGPAP flap could be a valuable option as an alternative method for autologous breast reconstruction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)359-366
Number of pages8
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Jul 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Surgery


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