Have you been considering breast augmentation or reconstruction? Then you probably know about silicone and saline implants. Traditional breast augmentation uses implants to increase the size of the breasts.
But not every patient wants to have breast implants, so what are the other options? Fortunately, technology has improved dramatically in recent years, and there are new ways to have breast augmentation.,
This post shares details about how technology has changed breast augmentation, giving patients more choices than ever.
The most popular alternative to breast implants is fat grafting. This procedure involves liposuction of fat from a body area resistant to diet and exercise. After the fat is washed and processed, the surgeon injects it into the breasts.
According to New Jersey Plastic Surgeon Dr. Smita Ramanadham, “This procedure, which doesn’t involve invasive surgery or scarring, works well for many patients. The number of fat injections you need varies. But if you need full breast reconstruction, expect to need four or five surgeries with 300-400 ml of fat injected in each treatment.”
One session usually suffices if you only want breast augmentation with fat grafting. After that, your plastic surgeon will talk to you and check your anatomy to decide if fat grafting will work for you.
Steps for fat grafting are:
If the woman has breast reconstruction, the breast area may need to have tissue expansive for fat grafting to be successful.
The surgeon will give you a suctioning device that fits over the breasts, similar to a bra. It’s powered by batteries and gently tugs on the breasts over several weeks. This action stretches the tissue and prepares it for fat grafting.
The theory behind this procedure is that the sustained pulling area prepares the chest for fat grafting and increases the chances of more fat surviving.
The suctioning device, called Brava, is a significant advance in breast augmentation technology. It creates negative pressure – or vacuum – that boosts the blood supply to inject the fat.
Brava isn’t used on every patient – only some breast reconstruction patients – but this new technology makes breast augmentation viable for more patients.
The next step – or initial step for conventional breast augmentation patients – is fat transfer. First, the surgeon harvests fat from a common problem area, such as the abdomen, flanks, or legs.
Next, the fat is washed and processed, so oil and blood are removed. Then, the surgeon injects the fat into several parts of the breast.
The transferred fat must have an excellent blood supply to survive the process. With a blood supply, the fat will move out of place and die.
Also, if the surgeon puts in too much fat at once, the fat can die. Dead fat can lead to oil cysts that harden in the breasts and cause inflammation.
If the fat augmentation process is done well, you can have permanently larger breasts without using breast implants.
Note that mammograms are usually not a problem after fat grafting. This is because radiologists know how to differentiate between transferred fat and possible cancerous tumors.
Not every patient is suitable for breast augmentation. For example, thin women may not have enough fat to harvest for fat transfer. If that’s the case, regular breast augmentation may be needed.
Fat Grafting Advantages
Fat grafting is the most popular alternative to breast implants. Advantages include:
No Need For Implants
The most apparent advantage to fat grafting is no implants are needed. In addition, if the fat develops a healthy blood supply, the breasts will be slightly larger and feel natural.
The incisions are tiny, and scars are almost invisible after you heal.
If you have a mild sagging issue, fat grafting works well because looser skin makes it easier to inject the fat.
Another benefit is having fat removed from a problem zone and injected into the breasts. This is a two-for-one procedure that can slim your profile and enlarge your breasts.
Fat grafting is a less invasive procedure than breast implants. As a result, you can expect a shorter recovery after fat transfer and possibly less discomfort and swelling.
On the downside, you should remember that fat grafting isn’t intended for a significant size increase. You probably need breast implants if you want to go from a B to D cup.
Also, the skill of your surgeon is of critical importance. It’s essential that the transferred fat develop its own blood supply. That’s why it’s so important that the surgeon is board-certified and skilled in the fat transfer procedure.
If too much fat is injected, it will be reabsorbed or harden. Both situations require revision surgery.
Another surgery that has evolved with technology improvements is auto-augmentation breast enlargement.
This type of breast augmentation is an excellent choice for those who want a breast lift and a slight increase in volume, usually caused by weight fluctuations.
Auto-augmentation refers to the procedure using your natural breast tissue to reshape and lift the breast. The surgeon doesn’t add anything during this procedure, but reshaping and repositioning your breast tissue will make the breast look bigger.
The surgeon makes an incision around the nipple and down to the breast crease. Then, the breast tissue is rearranged to make it larger and more lifted. Then, the surgeon closes the sutures.
Your plastic surgeon also can remove extra skin during auto-augmentation. As a result, the breasts will appear larger and higher on the chest without breast implants.
This method is ideal for patients who want a fuller and listed breast without a significant size increase. However, if you want to increase more than a cup size, you probably need breast implants.
Auto-augmentation can avoid some future sagging that occurs with implants. Also, you won’t need to worry about an adverse reaction to a breast implant.
Breast augmentation technology has changed considerably in recent years. As a result, breast implants are safer and more versatile than ever.
Advances in technology also have given us alternatives to breast augmentation with implants. Whether you think you want implants, fat transfer, or something else, talk to your surgeon today about your breast augmentation goals. Then you can both decide which is a fit for you.