Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation With Stem Cells.
So why am I writing about breast augmentation, besides the obvious fact I like breasts? I read a lot of diverse publications, and when I came across this topic in an issue of Plastic Surgery Practice, I thought it was an interesting topic many in the fitness/bodybuilding arena might also find interesting and potentially useful….Sounds like science fiction, or at the very least, some future way of increasing breast size, but it’s not. It’s a technology being used now in fact. No more implants, but your own real tissue.
I’m sure most reading this recall some years ago talk about transferring fat from one place – such as the hips, stomach, etc - to the breasts as the next big thing in breast augmentation (BA) procedures, but then the idea seemed to drop off. It was another one of those ideas that sounded great “on paper” but didn’t pan out so well. Due to the way the fat was harvested, 50% or more of the fat tissue transferred died, and was simply reabsorbed. It often left lumpy spots, and possibility of calcifications was another possible side effect. Thus, why it was a short lived idea, but that does not mean it went away…
As with many early technologies, it needed some additional work to be viable, and it appears that time is here. With much improved harvesting and implanting techniques, and using stem cells (more on that in a minute) to greatly improve survival rates of the transferred fat, according to a Dr. Malan interviewed in a recent issue of Plastic Surgery Practice (1) over 80% of the tissue transferred survives and newer techniques look very natural with very low rates (lower then for that of implants BTW) of complications.
Here’s how it works: it’s normally done during a liposuction procedure. The removed fat tissue is then divided. Part of the fat tissue has its stem cells extracted and purified, so this is using the person’s own stem cells for the procedure. The stem cells that were extracted and purified are then mixed with the remaining fat tissue, and implanted using very small needles injected into the breast tissue. The stem cells release growth factors that lead blood vessels to grow (giving the newly implanted fat a blood supply so it does not die) as well as other assistance such as less trauma and swelling. Some have suggested the addition of the stem cells actually leads to additional breast tissue growth beyond what was implanted, but I don’t believe that’s been researched.
The end result is, larger breasts using your own tissues and no implants to worry about, with the bonus of some fat removed from the areas of liposuction. Flatter tummy, bigger boobs, in one shot.
Although some still consider the procedure in the “experimental stage” it’s been done in other countries outside the US for some time now, and a few docs in the US have been doing it with a fairly large number of patients. Todd Malan, M.D. at the Innovative Cosmetic Surgery Center in Scottsdale, AZ, is probably the doc with the most experience in the US using stem cell augmented BA.
This will probably be the true BA women have been searching for if the procedure gets greater attention and acceptance in the cosmetic medical field as it appears to be a big step forward in BA. As far as I can tell so far, the major drawback to typical BA is it costs more, but if it’s as big a step forward over implants it seems, it sounds worth it.
For a list of docs using this method, click HERE
(1) Jan 2010, p16