Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation: How Safe Is It?

Fat Transfer or lipofilling has been around for close to 100 years and has been used in combination with liposuction for over 20 years.

Plastic surgery is increasingly on the rise and breast augmentation is one of the popular procedures people are going for. There are varieties of procedures out there but if you are looking for a less invasive route, you may want to look into breast augmentation using fat grafting whereby plastic surgeons by liposuction relocate fat from other parts of your body to your breasts.

What Is Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation?

Fat transfer is a cosmetic procedure in this case performed on the breasts that uses excess fatty tissue to enhance the appearance of the breasts without introduction of foreign substances. This procedure has many benefits that we will discuss in this article.

Pros and Cons of Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation

Over the years, fat transfer techniques have evolved but there are some pros and cons of breast implants still associated with breast augmentation. One of the most prevalent problems happens to be the possibility of changes on mammogram that can mimic cancer. Over 500 cases in Italy and France have taken place and experienced radiologists are able to differentiate these changes in mammogram from breast cancer.

If patients are not treated within the proper guidelines of breast transfer augmentation, the results may be damaging leading to difficulties.

Breast augmentation fat transfer has great potential but should be carefully used to avoid tarnishing its name. Below we are going to discuss the fat transfer breast augmentation pros and cons.

Advantages of Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation

Potentially, fat transfer breast augmentation is a great procedure since fat is liposuctioned from the woman’s own body and redirected to the breasts for augmentation. Since the woman uses her own fat, there is no need for breast implants. When the breasts heal appropriately, they look and feel normal. The incisions use to inject fat are only 4mm incision hence not that noticeable.

Breast augmentation procedures have relatively low complication rates and most of the women and their doctors are satisfied with the results.

Breast augmentation is very useful to a woman that wants to address a minor breast symmetry that requires minimal adjustment in a subtle way. When a woman also wants to fine-tune the results of a breast implant procedure for a more natural shape, breast augmentation gives beautiful results.

Up to 62% of surgeons use fat grafting as a breast reconstruction technique while a smaller percentage uses it as an aesthetic technique. The main advantage of the fat grafting augmentation procedure is the natural appearance and lack of risks associated with implanting alloplastic breast prosthesis.

Being an all-natural procedure, fat grafting gives patients a great option that does not require the intrusion of other foreign bodies.

In addition to the benefits, the procedure can last a long time.

Disadvantages of Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation

Here, patients can only expect an increase of one or two cup sizes, unlike breast implants which have more size options. Depending on what a woman wants, they can choose to get more than one fat injection to achieve the size they want. This option takes longer and may end up being increasing the cost of fat transfer breast augmentation as well.

This procedure does not help women with sagging breasts. Noticeable sagging breasts can only benefit from a breast lift procedure.

Another big disadvantage is fat reabsorption. Your body can reabsorb the fat after the procedure. Even the best plastic surgeons cannot stop the body from reabsorbing the fat. When it comes to long-term enhancement, you may not meet your targeted expectations. Because of the fat reabsorption, one may need multiple procedures for lasting effects and with the increasing number of procedures, so is the increased chance of complications.

The extra fat from the procedure can interfere with breast cancer screening images creating changes that may be present throughout the lifetime. After the procedure, you can expect life-time follow up conversations and closer monitoring if you experience this issue.

Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation Procedure: What Are the Steps?

Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation Procedure

The fat transfer breast augmentation procedure involves the following steps:

  • Anesthesia

The fat transfer can be done under general or local anesthesia. The anesthesia is administered for optimal comfort during the surgical procedure. The choices include general anesthesia and intravenous sedation. After consultations with the doctor, he/she will recommend the best choice.

  • Incision

This is done in order to remove the fat. The incisions are small and are used to suck out small fat amounts, they are then closed with stiches, and a small dressing placed over them. These incisions are made in areas that are inconspicuous in order to minimize scarring. The place where the incisions will be made depends on the appropriate options for the desired outcomes. The incisions options available include the areolar edges and the folds under the breasts. The belly button approach is also considered though it has pretty higher complication rates. The incisions depend degrees of enlargement required and the woman’s particular boy autonomy.

  • Preparing the fat

The fat is prepared using some special equipment and is spun to separate it from blood and other body fluids. The fat is inserted into the breasts through injections. A needle and syringe inject the fat as small pockets through tiny holes in the skin; stitches are thus not normally needed.

  • Results

After all is said and done, it is time for healing and waiting for the results to take effect in the body. You should not feel much pain during the procedure but you may have some slight pain few days later or weeks afterwards. If need be, you will be given some painkillers.

Cost of Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation

Just as with any surgery, fat transfer breast augmentation is dependent on the conditions of your operation, your location and the surgeon. So how much does breast augmentation with fat transfer usually cost?

Larger fat transfers tend to be more expensive. Traditional breast implant surgeries relatively cost the same but unlike fat transfer breast augmentation; they have more scarring, higher rejection risks and a less natural sculpting effect.

A large part of the cost goes to the surgeon’s fees while the anesthesiologist’s fee take up also a large part of the fees.

Some surgery centers have their own fees that you may need to pay. You should also cater for pain medication and follow up costs. You may some medical supplies need for scar treatment and bandaging.

During recovery, depending on the size of their breasts one may need a special post-surgery bra that provides extra support during recovery.

Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation Recovery

Of course, you need to make some arrangements for someone to drive you home after the procedure. The treated areas remain bruised and swollen for about four weeks and you may therefore need to take some time off work.

After the procedure, it may take up to 6 months for the surgical transfer to fully take effect. After the first four to six weeks, 50 to 70 percent of the injected fat survives in the breast and the breast size stabilizes. During this period, you should avoid exercise and heavy lifting.

One should wear compression garment over the area that received liposuction and a sports bra to keep the breasts in place as they heal. As long as you maintain your weight, the breast size remains the same. If you gain or lose weight, body contours change. Fat cells grow larger or smaller depending on weight loss or weight gain.

To limit the possibility of altering results, a diet rich in fruits and vegetables is recommended.

Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation Risks: Is It Safe?

Before considering the fat transfer breast augmentation, a woman needs to consider not only the desired results but also the long-term effects associated with the procedure. Initially, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons did not vouch for the procedure of fat grafting in breast augmentation. This is because of its associated risks, which we are going to discuss.

Some of the associated fat transfer breast augmentation risks include cysts, necrosis (fat cell death), infections, possibility of migration of fat cells elsewhere in the body and micro calcification.

Other possible risks include:

  • Bleeding
  • Hematoma
  • Anesthesia risks
  • Variation in breast sensation
  • Formation of tight scar tissue
  • Skin wrinkling
  • Possibility of a revision surgery.

Before the surgery, you will be asked to sign a consent form just to ensure that you understand all the associated risks and potential complications.

Over the course of your lifetime, pregnancy, weight loss and menopause may influence the appearance of the breasts. The procedure is not guaranteed to last a lifetime. After the procedure, it is important to go for regular breast examination checks to evaluate the conditions of the breasts.

Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation Before and After: Pictures

Fat transfer breast augmentation before and after

Fat transfer breast augmentation before and after

Image Credits: https://www.agulloplasticsurgery.com/blog/the-pros-and-cons-of-breast-augmentation-with-fat-transfer/

Fat transfer breast augmentation before and after

Fat transfer breast augmentation before and after 1

Fat transfer breast augmentation before and after 2

Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation FAQs

  • Where can I get fat transfer breast augmentation?

There are many locations in the UK, US, Australia and Canada where you can get the procedure done. There are highly experienced surgeons in London, Stockholm and Oslo with over 10 years’ experience in the field of reconstructive surgery. They are flexible and credible and provide 24/7 assistance. Your plastic surgeon should be an accredited member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS).

  • How long does fat transfer breast augmentation last really?

The body will reabsorb the portion of fat transferred to your breasts and after the initial three months healing process, the fat is permanently transplanted. During this time, blood vessels have developed in the area thus helping the fat stay viable.

  • How much does fat transfer breast augmentation cost?

One may end up spending a lot of money without getting the desirable results. The cost aspect also scares away some women from undertaking the procedure. The real question is how much does breast augmentation fat transfer cost. One can receive great results with this investment but not all might have the money to cover such costs.


Breast transfer augmentation is a plausible option for women that want natural results. The question of how much is a fat transfer breast augmentation makes many shy away from the procedure but it is totally worth it if one is willing to work for it. It has better results than a traditional implant hence one may need to give this option a closer look.

Last updated on September 29th, 2020

Chris Riley

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