Breast Reconstruction and Fat Grafting

Fat grafting is one of the most popular improvements in breast reconstruction today. According to recent article autologous fat grafting following breast reconstruction will not increase the long-term risk for the recurrence of tumors according to US research. According to recent article “Autologous fat grafting remains an attractive, and flexible, tool for optimizing aesthetic outcomes during breast reconstruction, with an associated low risk of complications,” say Neil Fine (Northwestern University, Chicago, Illinois) and colleagues. The injection of fat allows physicians many different advantages in the reconstruction of breast; however, it remains controversial. That grafting with small amounts of fat can improve volume defects, treat breast contour deformities, and provide a viable solution especially for unilateral reconstruction in which symmetry is severely affected. Another benefit is that fat grafting creates a more natural consistency and texture the reconstructed breast when compared with breast implants. Although there are benefits, there are concerns over the post-breast cancer outcome. There are some experimental studies that have suggested that adipocytes could actually stimulate tumor growth and accelerate their progression. Published in Plastic Reconstructive Surgery, the retrospective review included 886 consecutive patients undergoing mastectomy at one institution between 1998 and 2008. After a follow-up timeframe of two years patients who were injected with that following their mastectomy did not had any recurrences of cancerous tumors, while the recurrence rate overall was 1.5% in women who did not undergo fat grafting. Even so, the conclusive impact of fat grafting remains largely undetermined and continuous research is needed. Dr. Seify participates in several clinical trials including those that include fat grafting. Breast reconstruction is approached as a team effort so the patients can realize the maximum benefit. This includes the participation of all treating physicians for the patient once she is diagnosed with breast cancer. Often the oncologist, radiologist, and general surgeon will work closely with Dr. Seify to help offer the best options for breast reconstruction for every patient. Patients who are diagnosed with breast cancer and are considering breast reconstruction are encouraged to contact Dr. Seify’s office and schedule a consultation.

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