Tuesday, January 27th, 2015
While it may sound crazy, fat grafting of the breasts is the real deal. Suctioning out unwanted fat from one area of the body and adding it to specific areas in a breast helps create a more refined, sculpted look. Initially used for breast cancer reconstruction, techniques continue to evolve and the technique is now being used more and more in cosmetic breast surgery as well.
Fat grafting of the breasts is not new. In 1895, a German physician named Vincenz Czerny described breast reconstruction of a 41 year-old singer. She was concerned about how she would appear on stage after having to have a breast removed. She had a large lipoma (fatty tumor) in her lower back, so this was taken and placed in the mastectomy defect. In 1919 another German doctor, Erich Lexer, published "Free Transplantations", a 2 volume text about grafting. In this text he described some clinical applications of fat graft breast augmentation and reconstruction. Melvyn Bircoll, a Los Angeles surgeon, published his experience with breast augmentation using liposuctioned fat in 1987. Emmanuel Delay in Lyons, France began using fat grafting for breast reconstruction in 2000. Gino Rigotti, in Verona, Italy, presented a large series at a 2007 European aesthetic plastic surgery meeting. Over the last 10 to 15 years fat grafting has been championed in the United States by Sydney Coleman in New York, Daniel Del Vecchio in Boston, Roger Khouri in Miami, and Kamran Khoobehi in New Orleans.
Methods for obtaining the fat, processing it, and placing the fat into the breasts are changing all the time, allowing for ever-improving shapes and contours with enhanced safety and predictability. One of the early concerns about fat grafting was that it may make mammograms more difficult to interpret. Clinically this has not been found to be the case. Del Vecchio and others have published their experiences, with a very low incidence of oil cysts and calcifications seen after fat grafting. Peter Rubin in Pittsburgh also reported a study showing that mammograms of women who have undergone breast reduction surgery are actually more difficult to interpret than mammograms of women who underwent fat grafting.
Many women come to the office with a desire to have more shapely breasts. An area that almost all want to have addressed is the flattened area at the top of the breasts, where the chest transitions to the breast. Breast implants help fill that area and may be all that's needed. Sometimes, however, adding a little fat to the upper breast may create an even more subtle transition and more filling in that area. Fat may also be added in other areas as well, depending on the specific findings and desires. A woman who is thinking about breast augmentation who also happens to have fullness in her thighs or abdomen may be an ideal candidate for fat grafting of her breasts. Using slightly modified liposuction techniques, the fat is removed from the areas where contour improvement is desired. The fat is collected and cleansed of oils and blood cells. The cleaned fat is then injected into the desired areas of the breasts.
The surgery may take two or three hours to accomplish. Recovery is similar to that of a typical liposuction operation. For a few days there is some soreness at the sites from which the fat was taken, and the breasts feel fairly tight. Swelling begins to subside after five or six days but the final shape of the breasts and the suctioned areas won't be seen for a few months.
Fat grafting of the breasts is an exciting, evolving technique. Women now ask about it frequently when they visit the office. If you have been thinking about changing the shape and appearance of your breasts, fat grafting is something you should at least know about. Call the office and come learn about this intriguing procedure!
Friday, March 28th, 2014
- (Tummy tuck patient from 2013)
In North Texas, when your children are young it's almost impossible to avoid the pool in the summer. And for many women, therein lies the conundrum. They love their kids and the whole pool scene, yet they're uncomfortable with how they look in their bathing suits. Looking around, seeing so many tan, fit bodies, wondering what happened to them. Why all the stretch marks, the pooch that falls over the top of the bikini bottom, the loose skin just above the thigh crease? Where has the belly button gone? WHAT HAPPENED?
Here's a little secret: all those fit bodies? Well, a lot of them look so good because they've had a little help. Tummy tucks, for instance, can make a huge difference. I often refer to this operation as, "the return of the belly button". Look in the photo gallery section of the website in the Abdominoplasty section. Women frequently choose us because they have seen a lot of pictures and think we create some of the best belly buttons. All of those nagging issues described above can be addressed with a tummy tuck ("abdominoplasty"). It is common for a woman who undergoes a tummy tuck to end up with a "Wow!" type of result. It's a difference-maker.
Come see us. Spring is a great time for an abdominoplasty!
Tuesday, February 11th, 2014
This unusually cold North Texas winter will soon be a memory. Spring is just around the corner! Temperatures warm, heavy coats are put away, and warm weather clothing makes its way to the display racks. It's a perfect time for breast augmentation! Contrary to what a lot of people think, most women who come to see me for breast augmentation surgery don't want really big breasts; they just want to wear great tops. Most of these women have never felt comfortable in cute tops or bathing suits and they want to feel confident wearing sleeveless and strapless clothing.
One of the best things about breast augmentation is that there are so many shapes and sizes of breast implants available. We can help you choose an implant that enhances your figure without making you look disproportionate. In our office the Vectra 3-dimensional imaging system is used as part of the consultation to help you find the look you want. The Vectra system takes photographs of your torso with 6 cameras, and the computer blends these photographs into one three-dimensional image. We can choose any implants available in the US today, click a mouse, and like magic the software creates a simulated image of your breasts with those exact implants in place. Rather than seeing before-and-after pictures of other women who have undergone breast augmentation, this system lets you see what you may look like after an augmentation. The software even includes bikini tops and sleeveless tops that may be superimposed on the image to show you how you might look in those.
Spring is a fantastic time for breast augmentation. Be ready for the summer! Come visit with us and see what you might look like after an augmentation. The Vectra technology is way cool. Check it out!
Thursday, September 5th, 2013
We are the first medical practice in Tarrant County offering the Vectra XT imaging system. This is truly a "Wow" device! Six cameras take pictures of you, then a computer takes those six pictures and reconstructs one 3-dimensional image. We can then do some amazing things with this 3-D image. The image can be rotated and twisted, allowing us to show you parts of you that are hard to see in a mirror. As part of the educational process, we can draw on the image to show you, for instance, where incisions may be required or to point out specific findings to make sure that we are talking about the things that are most important to you. For our breast augmentation patients it's even better. Information about every breast implant currently available in the US is stored on the computer. We can take the 3-dimensional image of the woman's chest and pick a specific size, shape, and volume implant. Click a button and voila! The computer creates an image of what the result of those specific implants might look like in that specific person. Want to see what a different set of implants might look like? Click, done. We have also found this to be very useful in our breast cancer patients. In those women it helps us tailor the final result to more closely match the size and look of the reconstructed breast to the breast without cancer. While this imaging system does not tell us exactly what someone's final result will be, we have found it to be a wonderful tool in helping our patients understand possibilities. Vectra has been, for our practice, an incredible enhancement to the entire educational process for our patients. Come see it for yourself! We're the first in the area to have it!