Definition - What does AlloDerm mean?

AlloDerm is a surgical procedure that uses human tissue that has been donated from cadavers to tissue banks. It is most often used in breast reconstruction after a woman has been treated for breast cancer. This procedure is also used on occasion for lip enhancement, treatment for deep wrinkles and even in dental treatments.

TheConsultation explains AlloDerm

Originally, AlloDerm was used for skin grafting for burn victims, because the body was more likely to accept human tissue than other forms of treatment. It is most often used today in breast reconstruction, where it provides additional support for breast implants. The ideal candidate is someone who needs extra support for an implant to prevent migration. The surgeon will create an incision to insert the tissue matrix into the breast area. It will be stitched into the chest wall so that it stays in one place. The body will then populate the tissue with its own cells and blood vessels. There is less concern about rejection because the body recognizes the transplanted tissue as its own.

The procedure is often part of multiple surgeries, beginning with a mastectomy. It acts as a tissue expander and may reduce the number of times the breast needs expansion. AlloDerm may also be used in reconstruction after the initial procedure to correct the positioning of an implant or to reduce evidence of rippling of an implant. While this procedure is most often used in breast reconstruction, it may also be useful in the reconstruction of the face and abdominal area.

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