Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation: Pros, Cons and Surgery Cost

Who doesn’t want to have bigger and fuller breasts? We know we all do. But achieving it required either going under the knife or committing to long term use of pills, breast enlargement creams or breast pumps. These procedures provide actual results but they are either too risky or time taking.

But fat transfer breast augmentation is a unique breast enhancement procedure that gives instant results and does not involve any invasive surgery or hormonal pills.

In this procedure, the plastic surgeon uses liposuction to collect fat cells from the stomach, hips and other fat-abundant areas of the body and then transfer them to the breasts for a softer and natural appearance compared to artificial implants.

This procedure is also known as fat grafting, fat injections, lipotransfer, natural breast augmentation and autologous fat transfer.

How Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation Works?

Fat transfer breast augmentation involves two procedures that are performed simultaneously. First is liposuction. In most cases the surgeon uses water assisted liposuction to remove excess fat from the areas you have chosen while minimizing cell damage. The donor sites include inner and other thighs, tummy, lumbar region, etc. A laser is used as a finishing tool in the liposuction procedure to reduce the scars and provide a smooth contoured effect and to promote collagen production.
How Fat Grafting is Performed?

Img Source: westcountyplasticsurgeons.wustl.edu

The collected fat is harvested, processed and purified and then re-injected into the breasts. This technique requires great expertise and finesse. The surgeon has to inject the fat in very little amounts throughout the multiple layers of the breasts to that they have a natural look. It is also important to inject the fat in all the right places so that the new fat cells get access to blood supply so that the procedure lasts longer.
Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation Before & After Pictures

Pros and Cons of Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation

PROS:

  • It uses the candidate’s own tissue instead of an artificial implant
  • Minimally invasive procedure
  • Minimal downtime and fast recovery
  • Fat is removed from the problem areas
  • Fat-graft-reconstructed breasts have a soft and natural feel and show some sensation
  • Scar-free procedure

CONS:

  • Only one-cup size enhancement can be achieved per session
  • Patient must have enough body fat so that it can be removed from donor site
  • Newly transferred body fat takes time to establish its blood supply and become permanent

Potential Side Effects of Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation

Although, one might think that fat transfer breast augmentation is safer compared to artificial implants because it does not involve major surgery, but doctors and scientists are not sure how successful will the procedure be in the long run because no major clinical studies have been done on this procedure.

In many cases, the fat injected into the breast may be reabsorbed by the body over time and the breast may lose volume.

If the newly grafted fat does not live, it can form microcalicifications and oil cysts.

In certain cases, removing excess fat cells from the donor site can cause donor area defects as well as side effects of liposuction such as sensory changes, discoloration, poor skin reaction, irregularities, etc.

Some candidates may also suffer from typical surgery issues such as bleeding, infection, etc.

Who Can Opt for Breast Augmentation using Fat Transfer?

Candidacy for fat transfer breast augmentation depends on the candidate’s breast augmentation goals and the breast and body anatomy of the candidate.

  • A fat transfer breast augmentation candidate can expect an increase in the breast volume by one half a cup size and no more than a full cup size.
  • The candidate’s body must have sufficient fat at the donor areas from which the fat cells can be extracted and harvested.
  • The candidate should have a BMI of below 25 kg/m2, normal mammogram and no personal or family history of breast disease.

Despite some minor disadvantages, Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation is a relatively safe and non-invasive procedure that does not involve surgery. The procedure is done in outpatient ward under general anaesthesia and sedation and recovery time is much less than silicone implants surgery.

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