Patient Instructions

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Latissimus with Tissue Expander Reconstruction

You may shower daily once you get home. Do not take a bath until instructed. Wash incisions with soap and water daily. Leave tapes in place and pat dry. Do not wrap chest or use any compression garments after surgery.

See drain instruction sheet for drain care.

Resume normal activity 3-5 days after surgery. Avoid vigorous activity and heavy lifting for 6 weeks. Walk daily.

Evaluate flap skin paddle daily if any changes call immediately. Redness, discoloration, or drainage, some bruising is normal but if it is excessive please call.

Begin arm exercises as soon as possible. Walk fingers up the wall, brushing teeth/hair, and gentle range of motion.

Tightness in the chest or back region and stiffness; Tingling, burning or intermittent shooting pain: These are normal experiences as the skin, muscles and tissue stretch to accommodate your implants, and as sensory nerves heal. Pain medication and muscle relaxants will help you cope with any discomfort. If you have drains, you may experience additional localized discomfort. Consistent sharp pain should be reported to our office immediately.

Shiny skin or any itchy feeling: Swelling can cause the breasts� skin to appear shiny. As the healing process advances, you may also find a mild to severe itchy feeling of the breasts. An antihistamine like Benadryl can help to alleviate severe, constant itchiness. If the skin becomes red and hot to the touch, contact our office immediately.

Asymmetry, the breasts look different, or heal differently. Breasts may look or feel quite different from one another in the days following surgery. This is normal; no two breasts are perfectly symmetrical in nature or following breast reconstruction surgery.

A sloshing sound or sensation: This is not the result of your implant filler, but rather of air that is trapped in the implant pocket and fluid that may naturally accumulate. This is perfectly normal and will resolve within 2-4 weeks.


  • A high fever, (over 101�) severe nausea and vomiting, continued dizziness or incoherent behavior, such as hallucinations.
  • Any pain that cannot be controlled by your pain medication.
  • Bright red skin that is hot to the touch.
  • Excessive bleeding or fluid seeping through the incisions.
  • A severely misshapen breast or bruising that is localized to one breast or region of the chest.

Dr. Gary A. Tuma | Two Capital Way, Suite 505 | Pennington, NJ 08534 | Phone: 609-537-7000 | Fax: 609-537-7070      
Photographs on the website are models, not actual patients.