What is the long term success of breast augmentation by fat grafting in athletes? Is this procedure recommended for athletes?
Great question! Fat grafting success relies on blood supply in the "recipient site," where the fat is grafted to. In the case of an athlete, this should be as good or better than the average woman. However, fat grafting does require enough purified fat cells to be harvested and transplanted, which can be a challenge in some athletes with low body fat percentage.
With regards to long-term results, generally our bodies gain and lose body fat by increasing and decreasing the size of existing fat cells, rather than by adding or removing existing cells. Therefore, the transplanted fat cells that survive generally do very well long-term, although they may shrink as body fat is lost through exercise, eating habits, etc.
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Jarred McDaniel, MD
Gallatin Plastic Surgery
Thank you for sharing your excellent question. In most cases fat grafting can be successfully performed in athletes and recommendations will depend on what the exact goals of the transfer. Seek out a series of consultations for the best advice.
Fat grafting to the breast has been found to be a reasonable option in women who have enough "extra" fat to donate. Fat is often harvested from the abdomen, flanks, and/or thighs. However, in the breast, only about 50% of the injected fat survives. If your bodyfat level is fairly low, then you might not have enough excess fat to make a big difference in your breast size. However, the fat that does survive will stay put and your breast may enlarge or decrease in volume with weight gain or loss.
Hello barbellmom. I would never recommend fat grafting technique for Breast Augmentation purpose to any one, is still not well documented. The safest and long term results are obtainable by placing silicone cohesive gel implants under the pectoral muscles. And if you are an athlete I do not think you will have enough fat to fill your breasts.