Patients who have undergone mastectomy may choose to have breast reconstruction. One way to achieve this is through East Windsor fat grafting, also known as autologous fat transfer. During this operation, your surgeon extracts fat from a donor location, liquefies it, and then injects it back into your breast to shape it. Even though fat grafting for breast reconstruction is less invasive than other kinds of reconstruction, researchers haven’t been able to study it as long or as thoroughly as different types of breast reconstruction.
The procedure of fat grafting for breast reconstruction
The treatment involves eliminating fat from other body regions and transplanting it to the breast site. A surgeon will frequently do this under general anesthesia, which indicates you will not be awake during the procedure. Creating a natural breast shape might need numerous fat grafting techniques for 3–6 months. This is because the body absorbs between 10 and 90% of the injected fat.
During the first therapy, your surgeon might inject the fat into your pectoralis major muscle, lateral thoracic fascia, and mastectomy flaps. After the treatment, surgical assistants place compression garments on the donor and placement regions.
Benefits and results of fat grafting
After the fat grafting treatment, you will see fat retention ranging from 50-80%. Fat that isn’t absorbed back into your body will permanently augment the breast. Since no incisions are created to the breast during the grafting technique, fat injections by cannula leave minimal to no scars.
Another advantage of fat grafting therapy is the resulting slimmer, trimmer donor region (hips, belly, thighs, or love handles). Your specialist will create two tiny incisions at the donor area to harvest the fat; however, these are well-hidden and are generally 3mm at maximum.
The aftercare and recovery
Your surgeon will give specific instructions on what to do after the treatment. There may be stitches in the region where the specialist eliminated the fat or donor areas and transplanted the fat into your breast or the recipient sites. Tape and gauze may be used to cover the stitches. You might also experience bruising, swelling, scabbing at the donor and recipient regions, and pink or reddish discharge at the incision areas.
Additionally, you should shower instead of bathing and avoid getting your wound wet. To help alleviate any discomfort, you can take over-the-counter pain relievers and the drugs your surgeon has prescribed.
Fat grafting for breast reconstruction involves extracting fat from one part of the body, usually the thighs, stomach, or buttocks, and injecting it into your breast. Surgeons have utilized fat grafting as a complementary operation to other types of breast reconstruction. More recently, surgeons have been using fat grafting as a stand-alone treatment to reconstruct the whole breast.
It is essential to note that there has not been enough long-term study to establish how long the outcomes of this therapy last. You should speak with a healthcare provider about the advantages and risks of the treatment to determine the best course of breast reconstruction for you. Call Matthew J. Matthew J Lynch, MD, to schedule your appointment today to find out if you’re the right candidate for fat grafting as part of your breast reconstruction surgery.