Is Fat Grafting to the Breast Right for You?

For most of my 25+ years as a Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon, fat has been the enemy. It’s only in the last decade that we’ve come to realize that properly placed fat is actually your friend. It still surprises me, however, how many of my liposuction patients don’t think about adding on a fat grafting procedure until I point out the benefit of using their excess fat instead of just throwing it away. Fat grafting first came to prominence in the face as a more natural, permanent option to fillers. However, most of the public became aware of the benefits of fat grafting due to the growing popularity of the BBL or Brazilian Butt Lift. This is a surgical procedure that takes unwanted fat via liposuction from a donor area on the body, typically the abdomen or thighs, and uses it to augment your derrière. I have performed both of these procedures regularly since their inception so it was a natural transition for me, as a breast surgery expert, to start utilizing fat grafting in my breast procedures. Here is a primer to help you determine: Is fat grafting to the breast right for you?

Breast Augmentation with Implant or Fat Grafting

Many patients desire more volume in their breasts, but some do not like the idea of putting a foreign device in their body. However, augmenting the breasts with fat alone is not ideal for everyone. If you are only wanting to go up a cup size, fat grafting to the breasts may be an option. But as with every procedure, there are pros and cons. The advantages of a breast augmentation with fat are:

  • Own tissue so no risk of an adverse reaction
  • Completely natural feeling as no palpable or visible implant

The disadvantage of a breast augmentation with fat versus a breast implant is that fat is:

  • Unpredictable
  • Can only deliver a moderate increase
  • Requires 2 surgical sites (donor and breast) so longer surgery & recovery
  • May require additional surgery to deliver ideal results

Not All Transferred Fat Cells Survive

The reason that a breast augmentation with fat is less predictable than breast implants and may even require revision surgery is that not all of the transferred fat cells survive. This requires me to overfill the breasts to accommodate for this eventual die off. Having worked with fat grafting so extensively, I’ve developed an excellent eye for predicting your end result. But sometimes, more cells don’t make it on one side than the other or the resultant volume is just not enough, and I need to go in again and add more fat. This is why it is important to understand the realities of fat grafting to the breast so that you can make an informed decision.

Breast Implant & Fat Grafting to the Breast

While many patients may not be ideal candidates for a breast augmentation with fat alone, I regularly use fat grafting as part of my breast augmentation with breast implant procedures. It is fantastic for camouflaging the edges of an implant. This is particularly important in very thin women who typically do not have enough native breast tissue to provide adequate coverage. But it can also be useful for women who want more fullness in the upper pole or top half of their breasts. Bottom line, fat grafting to the breasts gives me another tool to sculpt and shape your breasts into their ideal form. 

Fat Grafting & Breast Revision Surgery

I also use fat grafting a lot in my breast revision procedures. In patients who are looking to downsize or remove their implants altogether, I have found that adding fat in combination with a breast lift is a lovely way to create a more favorable and youthful looking breast. 

So, if you have been reading about fat grafting to the breast and are curious if it might be right for you, schedule an appointment to come in and speak with us. It is one of those two-for-one procedures that can truly transform your torso. 

To find out more about a breast augmentation with fat, liposuction or any surgical or non-surgical procedure with Dr. Mark Epstein in Hauppauge, Long Island, contact us today or call 631-689-1100 to schedule a consultation. 

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