Women considering breast augmentation these days usually seek results that look as natural as possible, focusing more on having breasts that are proportional to their bodies. That’s led some of my breast augmentation patients to ask about a technique called fat transfer breast enhancement, which augments the breasts without implants.
Breast Fat Transfer vs. Implants
Fat transfer breast augmentation is really only appropriate for women who want a very modest increase in breast size. An increase of 1 to 1 ½ -cup size is the optimal result of a fat transfer procedure. Most women want the more significant increase that is possible with breast implants.
Combining Breast Implants With Fat Transfer
Hybrid breast augmentation, also called composite breast augmentation, involves using fat to enhance the results of breast enhancement using implants. The benefit of this approach is it enables plastic surgeons to customize breast augmentation procedures even more than they do now. Virtually all women have some differences in the size and shape between their two breasts, and we can use fat as a tool to fine-tune the symmetry of breast size and shape.
Fat transfer (also called fat grafting) also enables me to disguise any contour irregularities after placing the implants. It softens the feel of the implants, too, especially for patients who have little breast tissue or those who choose to have implants placed above the chest muscle. (You can learn more about choosing the right breast implants in our related blog post.)
How Is Hybrid Breast Augmentation Performed?
Fat transfer is a technique commonly used in various cosmetic plastic surgery procedures, both for body contouring and facial rejuvenation. It’s useful as a natural facial filler and is part of Brazilian butt lift procedures that enhance the shape of the buttocks.
For hybrid breast augmentation, the surgery begins with harvesting fat from an area of the patient’s body where it’s unwanted, such as the abdomen, flanks, or thighs, using liposuction. The idea of taking fat from where it isn’t wanted and using it to enhance the size of the breasts is one that most patients say sounds too good to be true. Something to keep in mind is that a patient needs to have enough excess fat to be a candidate for this procedure.
After extracting the fat, it’s spun in a centrifuge to separate the fat cells from blood and other impurities and to concentrate stem cells.
The implants used in hybrid breast augmentation are often slightly smaller than what a patient would normally choose, especially if there is enough fat to create a very natural-looking outcome. For patients who have less available fat, implants that match the desired results are used, and the fat puts the finishing touches on the procedure.
Choosing a Surgeon
As with any elective cosmetic surgery, it’s important to research the qualifications of plastic surgeons you’re considering, ensuring at a minimum that they are certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS). On top of that, you should ask about their experience performing fat transfer procedures.
Viewing before-and-after photos of actual patients is another way to determine what types of results they produce.
If you’ve been looking in the Boston area for a breast augmentation specialist and want to learn more about this innovative approach to breast enhancement, you can contact us using the online form to request a consultation. Or give us a call at (781) 740-7840 to schedule an appointment.