After giving replacement breasts made from pigskin to six women in Germany, doctors in Munich detailed the new method and say it results in fewer scars for mastectomy patients.
Senior doctor Darius Dian said the procedure used a "dermal
matrix" made from an under layer of the skin of pigs. The pig's own cells are removed from the skin. The woman's own cells and blood vessels repopulate the material after it has been transplanted.
A US biotechnology manufacturer won regulatory approval a year ago in the European Union to market the product, known as
The current standard method to reconstruct the breast relies on
transplanting flaps of the patient's own skin from the belly, back
or buttocks, but this leaves scars there and may also lead to
capsular contracture, a tightening of skin at the new join.
Munich University's Gynaecology Clinic said it was the first
clinic in Europe to offer the procedure. No major study of it has
been completed yet, but one is under way in the United States, Dian said. – (Sapa, November 2009)
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