Natural Fake Breasts

by Jason Stotts

Back in December, the NYT ran an article called “Natural Breast Augmentation” on new techniques that are being developed to perform breast implants using live fat from other parts of the body.  The idea is that if you could get this fat to grow and survive, then the breasts would be bigger, but made of fat and not a synthetic material: it would be a “natural fake breast.”  The other plus is that the fat that goes to make the augmented breast comes from some other part of your body: so the part of your body that you want to be fat will get fatter and the part of your body that you don’t want to be fat will be trimmer.

I think this is a great idea and I hope that they pursue it and get it to the point where it’s a viable alternative to unnatural looking silicone breasts that seem to be so popular today.

At the October meeting of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, Dr. Khouri [Dr. Roger K. Khouri: plastic and reconstructive surgeon in charge of the Miami Breast Center] presented a long-term study that suggested liposuctioned fat was now a “viable alternative to breast implants.” It tracked 50 women, ages 17 to 63, for an average follow-up of 3.5 years. (For weeks, participants wore a cumbersome bra-like tissue expander at night that was created by Dr. Khouri to create a scaffolding for their fat.) The study, which Dr. Khouri plans to publish in a peer-reviewed journal, found that the procedure does not impede the reading of mammograms and that on average, 85 percent of transplanted fat survived to give patients natural-feeling larger breasts.

But the disadvantages cannot be discounted. It’s usually more expensive than implants, it takes a year to see how much fat survived, and breast volume can fluctuate with weight. Dr. Scott L. Spear, the chairman of the plastic surgery department at Georgetown University Hospital, has enlarged a patient’s breasts only to have the patient undo his handiwork by losing weight. “They decide to run a marathon and their breasts go away,” he said.

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