January 26th, 2015
Wondering about what can be done to restore breasts after physical changes due to pregnancy and nursing? Meet our patient, Jennifer, who graciously shared her own personal experience in a short Documentary Film (video located bottom of page). Jennifer candidly discusses considering and deciding to have breast enlargement restoration surgery following the birth of her children. Her story is typical of patients we see that are unhappy with the physical changes that may occur following pregnancy and is considered part of the Mommy Makeover surgeries. Breast restoration surgery might include breast enlargement, breast lift or the newest technique called Nipntuck Natural® lipo-fat injections to increase breast fullness that’s often lost following pregnancy.
Photo: 2014 KQRS Real or Not Real Las Vegas Broadcast
January 13th, 2015
Breast asymmetry is a very common concern among women, adolescents and adults alike. No one is born with perfectly symmetric breasts and mild to moderate differences in breast shape, size (1-2 cup size difference) and position in the developing adolescent are to be expected. Moreover, breast asymmetries that persist beyond puberty affect more than half of all women! In fact, one study in the Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Journal, out of 100 women who wanted breast augmentation with implants found that 88 percent had natural asymmetries. At a time when our body and mind are changing rapidly, when is breast asymmetry a cause for concern? Having uneven breasts may impact a young woman’s body image. Let’s review the pros and cons of surgical intervention with an emphasis on newer techniques such as using liposuctioned fat to correct asymmetry, called fat transfer.
A recent study published in the December issue of the Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Journal highlights the psychological impact of breast asymmetry on adolescents. The study suggests that patients with breast asymmetry have poorer emotional well-being and lower self esteem than their female peers. This is not a surprising revelation given that high rates of breast dissatisfaction have been reported within the adolescent female population, especially during early adolescence when there is greater variance among peers. Psychological issues are important in this group of young women, and these issues include social embarrassment, low self-esteem, depression and isolation from classmates. Problems that occur relate to sexual relationships and cultural beliefs. The majority of these patients are young, healthy individuals, and the psychological and social impact of these conditions is significant. Physicians and parents should be aware that seemingly small differences to an examiner’s eye might have a considerable impact on the sometimes “fragile” psyche of an adolescent.
Surgical options for correction exist. These include improving breast symmetry by combining different techniques using implants, autologous (your own) fat transfer, liposuction, breast reduction and/or myocutaneous flaps. Correction of breast asymmetry often involves multiple surgical procedures. The best policy is early intervention with education, support and counseling. The key steps in successful management are diagnosis, appropriate referral, counseling, optimal timing of surgery and avoiding unnecessary surgery in a developing young adult. In the rare instance that the asymmetry causes such distress that your doctor recommends surgery, please consult with an experienced plastic surgeon about your options for surgery.
Newer techniques such as autologous fat transfer, offer a less invasive way to correct breast asymmetry with more natural appearing results. Fat grafting is natural, flexible and versatile. It allows the plastic surgeon to gradually sculpt and reconstruct the breast to a natural looking shape and feel. Like other reconstructive techniques, fat grafting is a staged procedure with results achieved over time. Fat is harvested from the abdomen, flanks and thighs and then is injected into the breasts through small incisions. This is an outpatient procedure, with each stage carried out every 3 to 6 months. The number of stages required for completion varies on an individual basis. The results are long lasting and the patient also receives the added benefit of liposuction at the donor sites.