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Annals of Surgical Oncology

, Volume 22, Issue 2, pp 416–421 | Cite as

Cannula-Assisted Flap Elevation (CAFE): A Novel Technique for Developing Flaps During Skin-Sparing Mastectomies

  • Michael D. GrantEmail author
Breast Oncology

Abstract

Background

One of the most challenging procedures in breast surgery is the skin-sparing mastectomy (SSM). Various techniques and incisions have evolved that characterize this procedure; however, what is common in all of them is the smaller the incision, the more difficult it is to develop the skin flaps.

Methods

A procedure was developed that incorporates the use of liposuction cannulas (without suction) to create the skin flaps. The technique and results are described in this manuscript.

Results

From October of 2012 to April 2014, 289 mastectomies (171 patients) were performed using the CAFE procedure on women of all shapes and sizes. Postoperatively, no problems were experienced with flap viability using this technique. The main difference in side effects between the CAFE technique and other standard techniques for developing flaps in SSMs was more bruising than normal, but this resolved rapidly. The results for use of this technique were consistently impressive. The learning curve for this procedure is very short, especially for those who perform SSMs using sharp technique (scissors). Residents and fellows became proficient with the CAFE technique in a relatively short amount of time. Plastic surgeons were pleased with the cosmetic outcomes of their reconstructions that follow this type of mastectomy. Patients were extremely satisfied with their reconstructions as well.

Conclusions

Incorporating the use of liposuction cannulas (without suction) makes the creation of flaps for SSM a relatively simple and rapid method. It is especially useful to assist in developing skin flaps with even the smallest of skin incisions.

Keywords

Breast Cancer Oncol Methylene Blue Sentinel Node Biopsy Breast Reconstruction 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Supplementary material

Supplementary material 1 (MP4 88311 kb)

Supplementary material 2 (MP4 83259 kb)

Supplementary material 3 (MP4 94567 kb)

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Copyright information

© Society of Surgical Oncology 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of Surgical Oncology, Department of Surgery, Baylor Charles A. Sammons Cancer CenterBaylor University Medical CenterDallasUSA

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