Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation

Who can be a candidate for fat transfer breast augmentation?

Because fat grafting uses fat from the patient’s own body for breast augmentation there is less chance for rejection. This means that the procedure is open to many candidates. It can be especially useful for people unsatisfied with their breasts who also have excess fat and would like to avoid the risks of breast implants.

Preparation for fat transfer breast augmentation

Before breast enhancement with fat transfer, you will meet with Dr. Yuan for consultation. He will discuss your medical history and goals for the procedure.

  • The fat harvesting sites
  • Your desired breast size and shape changes
  • The spots where the surgeon will make the tiny incisions for the procedure

How is the breast augmentation with fat grafting procedure done?

The procedure begins with harvesting fat from your body, either from one location or multiple. If one area has a particularly large amount of excess fat, that might serve as the only harvest site. Body areas that are good as donor site include

  • Abdomen
  • Love handles
  • back
  • Outer thighs
  • Arms

Type of anesthesia for breast fat grafting

Most structural fat transfer breast augmentation takes place under local anesthesia with anxiolytic medications. The procedure can also be performed under sedation or general anesthesia as requested.

Anticipated results of breast fat transfer

In general, each surgery can increase your breasts by one cup size. Depending on your condition, the total fat transfer could be between 200 cc to 400 cc. Any enlargement beyond that would usually require additional procedures.

Fat grafting can last longer than traditional implants. It does not need replacement over time. Whatever growth remains after about three or four months after surgery will become permanent.

fat transfer breast augmentation

Benefits for fat transfer breast augmentation

Fat transfer breast augmentation can improve the size and shape of breasts and correct asymmetry.

Structural fat grafting specifically can lift sagging breasts, improve the shape, and even cover up existing implants.

Other benefits of fat grafting for breast augmentation include:

  • A more natural procedure look and feeling.  
  • A long lasting result. 
  • Benefit from liposuction and body contouring. 
  • Possible better breast shape.  
  • Minimal incisions and scarring.

Candidate for breast augmentation with fat transfer

Ideal candidates for breast augmentation with fat transfer:

  • Are in good overall health
  • Want to have augmentation without implants
  • Have realistic expectations for the outcome of the procedure
  • Have sufficient excess fat in other regions of the body  

It’s important to understand that there are limitations to the increase in breast size that can be achieved using fat transfer. If you are looking for a significant change in the size of your breasts, implants may be a better option.

Recovery from breast augmetation with fat grafting

Your recovery from  fat grafting breast augmentation depends mainly on how many donors sites your doctor used for fat. You will likely experience bruising and swelling in those areas. Your breasts may be bruised and swollen, but in most cases, you’ll experience little or no pain. Soreness can last for approximately two weeks after the surgery, paresthesia may last several months before gradually returning to normal sensation.

You may be able to return to work in about a week. Most bruising and swelling should go away within about three weeks, but minor swelling can linger for up to six months.

You are encouraged to walk beginning the day after surgery and can return to light exercise in two weeks unless the procedure is done with fat grafting to another area. You can wear a soft supportive bra during the postoperative period.

Potential Risks for breast augmentation with implants

Breast augmentation with implants poses potential risks, including:

  • Scar tissue that distorts the shape of the breast implant (capsular contracture)
  • Breast pain
  • Infection
  • Changes in nipple and breast sensation
  • Implant position changes
  • Implant leakage or rupture

Correcting these complications might require more surgery, to either remove or replace the implants.

Risks of breast augmentation with fat grafting

Complications are rare with fat grafting, but those that can occur include:

  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Scarring
  • Irregularities
  • asymmetry
  • Need more surgery to achieve larger breast size
  • Calcification and lumps can appear after fat transfer.

The American Society of Plastic Surgery has determined that structural fat grafting to the breast is safe and does not lead to a higher rate of breast cancer. There also is no evidence that fat grafting to the breast makes it more difficult to detect breast cancer.

Compare breast augmentation with implant to fat transfer

Traditionally, breast augmentation is performed with saline or silicone breast implants placement. This method delivers beautiful results that enhance the size and shape of your breasts. To a certain extent, you can decide the size of your breasts after the surgery. You also avoid the discomfort in the area where fat is harvested. But there are some downsides for breast augmentation with implants

  • You will eventually need a revision procedure to replace your breast implants once they wear out.
  • You may experience complications such as capsular contracture, rippling or implant rupture.
  • For women with minimal natural breast tissue, it may be challenging to achieve results that feel or look natural with an implant.
  • Even though it is rare, implants can migrate downwards over time.

Breast augmentation with fat transfer eliminates these issues. Fat transfer provides permanent results that don’t require a revision procedure down the road. Many of the complications associated with breast implants are avoided by using a fat graft. In the process, you can also remove the unwanted fat from other areas and use it as a graft for augmentation.  In addition, because you are using a natural enhancement method, your new breasts will look and feel natural. The potential downside of fat transfer include:

  • Complications from liposuction
  • Limitation of how much breasts can be enlarged after each procedure
  • Potential increased difficulty to diagnose breast cancer by imagining study.

If you are interested in breast augmentation or have further questions, please feel free to contact our office.

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