When it comes to breast surgery it would appear that fat grafting is a widely used technique among cosmetic surgeons. In fact, a survey published in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery reported that 70% of US plastic surgeons have employed fat grafting techniques for breast operations. The survey goes on to report that this technique is especially popular when it comes to breast reconstruction.
When using this technique for breast reconstruction fat is harvested from another part of the patient’s body, often the abdomen, to remodel the breasts. The fat is used to sculpture the shape and size of breasts and is viewed as a more natural alternative to other methods.
In the past there has been some debate about the use of fat grafting when it came to breast surgery because it was thought it might complicate the detection of breast cancer. However, other studies have reported good results in early diagnosis and have shown that changes seen on mammograms are easily distinguished from abnormalities related to breast cancer.
Even so, there is an element of risk in any type of surgery. Another criticism of this technique in the past has been that it sometimes produced unpredictable results with regard to poor retention of the transferred fat cells.
Despite this, the popularity of fat grafting for breast reconstruction surgeries seems to be on the increase and the survey showed that up to 90% of the surgeons who adopted the fat grafting technique employed it for breast reconstruction surgeries.
The survey also reported that surgeons found the fat grafting technique especially useful for improving the shape of the breast including reconstruction after a lumpectomy.
Of course as more studies are undertaken, this technique looks set to continue to improve and evolve to provide the patient with ever optimal results.