Usually, we are trying to get rid of fat, but thanks to new techniques, fat is making itself useful…in our breasts.
Dr Dilip Gahankari, of Advanced Aesthetics Plastic Cosmetic Surgery and Laser Centre, says Lipo-augmentation or Autologous Fat Grafting (AFG) is a popular choice among women who are looking to enhance their breasts, but are reluctant to have an implant.
Dr Gahankari is a fan of AFG because he says it’s probably the most practical way to enhance the breasts with minimal surgical invasion.
“As well as that, fat-graft enhanced breasts often feel softer and more natural compared to implants,” he says.
AFG is a great choice for women who want a more modest enhancement, as fat grafting does not normally provide a boost of more than one cup size
For women who want a larger breast increase, AFG can also be used in addition to implants. The advantage is that it can provide a “cushioning” that may help prevent wrinkling or rippling as well as soften the feel of artificial breasts. This double procedure is called Hybrid Breast Augmentation.
“This is also thought to reduce the risk of capsular contracture in the longer term as fat itself has some sort of prohibitive influence on scarring,” says Dr Gahankari.
How it works
A trained, Plastic Surgeon uses a liposuction cannula to harvest fat from a selected area such as your waist, hips or buttocks.
The suctioned fat is cleaned of impurities such as oil and water and is injected back in pre-marked areas in the breasts. Small incisions are often placed in the breast crease and around the areola, and often droplets of fat are injected in a layered fashion.
The volume of injection depends on several factors such as availability, size of desired breasts and skin elasticity. The results take often several months to stabilise.
Important to remember
Fat grafting is a time-consuming procedure and can take hours to perform.
“I tell my patients that fat grafting is a multi-step procedure,” says Dr Gahankari. “The first step is the major one then, depending on the retention of the fat, subsequent sessions can be performed at six to 12 months intervals to add a cup size to the breast.”
As with all surgery, there are risks. Immediate complications can include minor infection, asymmetry, lumpiness, irregularity and the death of fat, says Dr Gahankari – “but these are minimised in the hands of a well trained surgeon”.
While AFG has been more popular in Asian countries – especially Japan and South Korea – for decades, western surgeons had some concerns it could be linked with missed diagnosis of breast cancer because of some calcification that can occur after fat grafting. However, it is now thought most experienced radiologists are able to differentiate between calcification from breast cancer and that from the fat grafting.
If you would like to know more about fat grafting, Dr Gahankari’s clinic, Advanced Aesthetics, offers complimentary consults with his surgical nurses Clare and Kerrie where you can address your individual goals and options. Call 1300 007 300 or complete the contact form below to book.
Please note: Individual results may vary. All surgical procedures carry risks and you should seek a second opinion before proceeding.