The idea of taking a patient’s unwanted fat from one area of her body and using it to increase the size of the breasts has a definite “best of both worlds” quality. And, for the right patient, fat transfer breast augmentation at our Austin, Texas cosmetic surgery practice can be an excellent option.
But the procedure has some limitations, and patients should know about them before choosing fat grafting for breast enhancement. Additionally, the choice between fat grafting and breast implants isn’t necessarily a black-and-white decision. Using fat to enhance the results of breast augmentation with implants is a common technique.
In this blog post, I’ll describe both the benefits and limitations of fat grafting for breast enhancement and explain why combining fat with implants really can be the best of both worlds.
Benefits of Fat Grafting Breast Augmentation
This technique is sometimes referred to as “natural breast augmentation,” a concept that appeals to some women who are uneasy about having implants inserted into their bodies. We respect that choice at Synergy and are dedicated to helping patients reach their aesthetic goals whenever possible.
Some other benefits of using your own fat for breast enhancement include:
- Body contouring: Fat transfer procedures involve using liposuction to harvest fat from another area of the body. The target fat donor areas are usually either the flanks, abdomen, thighs, or buttocks. The improved contours in the midsection, thighs, or derrière can help enhance the results of breast augmentation.
- No breast incisions: After your surgeon extracts fat using liposuction, the fat is processed in a centrifuge to purify it and is then re-injected into the breasts using a specialized syringe. The incisions needed for inserting implants aren’t part of the procedure.
Patients who want to pursue this procedure do need enough excess fat to make it a viable option.
Limitations of Fat Grafting Breast Augmentation
The primary drawback for many women considering fat grafting for breast enhancement is that the procedure is only appropriate for patients who want a modest increase in breast size. Usually, the technique can produce an increase of between 1 and 2 bra cup sizes at most.
Other limitations that you should consider :
- Unpredictable outcomes: Not all of the fat transferred to the breasts will “take” or survive the process. The percentage varies, and plastic surgeons try to compensate for this fact by injecting more fat than needed to create the desired results.
- Liposuction recovery: The fat transfer technique involves 2 recovery sites—the breasts and wherever the surgeon performs liposuction. Even though the recovery is very manageable, it is something that patients should consider before making a choice.
- Additional cost: Adding liposuction to breast enhancement extends the time needed for surgery and makes the procedure more expensive.
What about combining fat transfer with breast implants, as we wrote about in an earlier blog post? Combining the procedures can be very effective, especially for patients who have implants placed above the pectoral muscles. Fat can soften and camouflage the implants and minimize the risk of visible rippling, which is a concern for above-the-muscle placements.
Women who choose Synergy for breast augmentation enjoy beautiful results, as you can see for yourself in our gallery of before-and-after photos. If you want to learn more about your breast augmentation options at our Round Rock or Austin locations, you can contact us using the online form to request a consultation. Or give us a call at (512) 244-1439 (Austin) or (512) 244-1444 (Round Rock).