Fat transfer breast augmentation has become increasingly popular with women in recent years, replacing surgical implants as a “kinder, gentler” way to enlarge their breasts. While implants have come a long way in terms of appearance and safety, fat transfer offers distinct advantages. Among other things, results from fat transfer breast augmentation are permanent, whereas implants eventually must be replaced.
Permanent . . . but with a Few Caveats
Fat grafting uses your own body’s fat cells, so your newly enhanced breasts are more or less natural. For many women, that’s a plus in terms of look and feel. However, as a result, the breasts are still subject to natural body processes such as aging and weight gain or loss. Long term, normal age related changes such as atrophy of fat cells and thinning of the skin will affect the breasts to varying extents, just as your body ages in all other untreated areas.
Also, weight loss of greater than 25 pounds will affect the size of the breasts, just as it would even without fat transfer.
How Fat Transfer Works
To perform fat transfer breast augmentation, Dr. Hernandez will use VASER liposuction to remove fat from another part of the body where you have excess to spare – usually the abdomen, waist or back. This means you can achieve trimmer contouring in that area at the same time you are enhancing the size and contours of your breasts. Liposuction results are also permanent, with the same caveats noted above.
Maintaining Your Results
Like it or not, everyone’s body ages. However, there are things you can do to help achieve the best possible, longest-lasting results from your fat transfer breast augmentation.
- Immediately following your procedure, it is crucial that you follow Dr. Hernandez’s recommendations, especially about not putting pressure on your breasts. She will ask you to wear a soft cotton bra for about 6 weeks so you will have coverage without pressure. You will need to avoid strenuous exercise or anything else that might put pressure on your breasts. If you do not, fewer of the transferred fat cells will remain viable in your breasts because pressure affects these fat cells during the recovery period.
- Long term, maintaining a stable weight will help retain the size and shape of your newly enhanced breasts. Dramatic changes in weight, especially associated with pregnancy, can alter the shape of your breasts.
- Lifestyle decisions, especially cigarette smoking, negatively affect breast tissue by reducing vital blood supply and oxygen.
You Can Adjust Your Appearance
Not all fat cells will survive the transfer process. This is perfectly normal, though the amount of fat that remains viable varies from one person to another. As an experienced cosmetic surgeon, Dr. Hernandez can account for this by transferring a little more fat than needed. Nonetheless, after you are able to see the final results of your procedure, you may decide you want further enhancement.
Many women undergo fat transfer to their breasts twice to achieve a fuller look without implants. This is typically done 3 months later. Petite women with limited amounts of excess fat typically undergo fat transfer to the breasts first, then Dr. Hernandez can use Renuva injections to add more volume as desired. (Renuva is an adipose allograft matrix derived from human fat, so it contains the same proteins, collagens and growth factors found in your own fat.)
If you are a woman in good health overall who wants to increase her breasts about 1 cup size, or you previously had implants that have been removed, fat transfer augmentation may be an excellent choice. A personal consultation with Dr. Hernandez can help you understand the procedural details so you will be comfortable with your decision.