Rather than getting breast implants to increase breast size, some patients now prefer alternative breast augmentation methods, according to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS). Fat grafting is one such method and while often used for cosmetic facial procedures, butt augmentation, and breast reconstruction, it has rapidly become commonplace for breast augmentation as well.
Fat grafting, fat transfer or fat injection methods can be utilized if patients don’t want implants but have the appropriate existing fat volume (e.g., fat in love handles or saddle bags). The procedure first entails targeted liposuction and then utilizing this fat for targeted transfer into the breasts (for example, utilizing more of the fat in the upper portion of the breast to meet a patient’s request).
Though many more patients still opt for implants than for fat grafting (about 80-90% of breast augmentation patients are better candidates for implants based on their anatomy and existing fat volume), many patients like not having implants and enjoy the benefit of having more customized sizes. Additionally, there is minimal scarring, and breasts may feel more natural.
However, there are some disadvantages: Fat grafting is a longer procedure (can be several hours longer); requires as much recovery time as implant surgery (since patients are also recovering from liposuction); the procedure can be more costly; final breast volume can be less predictable; and only 50-60% of the fat remains permanent after 6 months while the rest of the fat may be metabolized and absorbed by the body, which may necessitate another operation.
As always, Dr. Salemy stresses the importance of working with an experienced Board Certified plastic surgeon who understands the pros and cons of fat grafting for breast augmentation, how the procedure works and who can assess whether patients are appropriate candidates for this procedure. Learn more about Breast Augmentation by Dr. Salemy.
Would you prefer breast implants or fat grafting, and why?