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Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation - An Alternative To Implants?

The reasons don’’t matter. They’'re absolutely personal, and they should be. Whatever they might be, perhaps the idea of surgery, the idea of getting breast implants, or some combination of the two just doesn’t appeal to you. You can'’t see yourself going that route. And yet, the desire is still there to change the way your breasts look and feel. It’'s possible there is another option for you that doesn’'t involve any major surgery or getting implants. Instead, more and more patients, if the option makes sense for them, are choosing fat transfer breast augmentation.

Conceptually, it’s simple. Extra fat from elsewhere on the patient’s body -- legs, buttocks, belly -- is redistributed to the breasts thus enhancing breast size and contour. The fat is obtained using liposuction techniques and injected using a small cannulae. Basically breast augmentation without going under the knife or getting actual implants. Really, for the patients that opt for fat transfer breast augmentations, they’re potentially getting multiple benefits at once. The breasts are augmented without introducing implants, and the area of the body that the fat is taken from is improved in appearance as well. However, fat transfer breast augmentations are not a realistic option for everyone and there are other important differences to note between it and getting breast implants.

Firstly, the patient has to actually have enough excess fat to work with. People that are already fit and trim might not have enough fat to make them a viable candidate for the procedure. And while we are on the topic of not enough fat remember transferred fat behaves just like any fat in the body. If post procedure a patient loses weight, the breast augmentation might also decrease in size. Secondly, and something that is a major factor in any patient’s decision making process, the cost for a fat transfer breast augmentation may be greater than it would be for implants. Price frequently depends on the number of areas of liposuction necessary to gather enough fat for the procedure. Finally, it could take up to a year before you will know for sure what the long lasting effects of the fat transfer breast augmentation will be, because not all of the transferred fat will survive in its new location.

It should also be noted that, in general, a patient looking for a dramatic increase in breast size should probably cross fat transfer breast augmentation off of the list. Because of the nature of the procedure, taking excess fat from one area of the body and injecting it into the recipient tissue of the breast, a large gain in breast size (something that’s easily attainable via implants) is simply not possible. The fact that not all of the transferred fat will thrive long term in the breast makes it all the more impossible for a large increase in cup size to take place. The general consensus is that patients can expect a maximum increase of a half to one full cup size.

One area in which fat transfer breast augmentation has gained more acceptance recently is how it relates to cancer. That is to say that initial worries that a fat transfer to the breasts might increase the risk of cancer or increase the rate of cancer recurrence in cancer patients has been largely laid to rest. A 2011 study showed no significant difference in breast cancer reoccurrence rates for patients that chose to have a fat transfer breast augmentation.

A breast augmentation is about improving the way you feel about your body. You want to feel good about the way you look, and a breast augmentation should help you achieve that goal. Choosing between implants and fat transfer might be easy for you, or perhaps you’re torn. Whatever the case, a GLOW cosmetic surgeon can walk you through both options and give you an honest, realistic assessment as to which technique makes the most sense for you, and go over what kind of longterm results you can expect. Schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with one of our surgeons in our Redwood City offices today.

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