9 October 2018

Breast implant or fat transfer: which is better?

Patients thinking of undergoing breast augmentation often ask whether it’s better to have an implant or a fat transfer, in which fat from another part of the body is injected into the breast. Both options are valid and neither can be said to be better than the other. In order to decide, each case is carefully reviewed, and the patients’ wishes are taken into account at all times.

How is breast augmentation with prosthesis performed?

Breast implants come in a wide variety of sizes. Breast augmentation with implants is performed through a minimal incision, usually made around the areola or in the inframammary fold, through which the implant is inserted. The implant can be placed just below the mammary gland or at a deeper level, below the muscle.

What’s different about breast augmentation using the patient’s own fat?

In this procedure, fat is taken from another part of the patient’s own body through liposuction (generally from the abdomen, buttocks, or thighs). After processing, the fat is injected into the patient’s breast and given the shape desired.

Pros and cons of breast augmentation with prosthesis

The use of implants allows us to choose from a wide range of sizes, and is usually less expensive than the use of the patient’s own fat.
However, some complications related to the implants can occur, such as capsular contraction, infection, or the rupture of the prosthesis. Some studies have also linked a specific type of implant to a greater long-term risk of lymphoma.

Pros and cons of breast augmentation with fat transfer

The risk of infection decreases, as no foreign material is inserted into the patient’s body. It’s the most popular alternative for women who are reluctant to use implants. Another advantage of this procedure is the absence of scarring, as the fat is transferred via injection. The main disadvantage of fat transfer is that it doesn’t achieve as large a size increase as an implant, and it is also more expensive.

What to choose: breast prosthesis or fat transfer?

We recommend consultation with a specialized plastic surgeon. Both these procedures produce highly satisfactory results and the choice of technique will depend on the anatomy of each patient, the results desired, and personal preference. Generally, if the patient is aiming for an increase of more than one cup size, for example, implants are usually a better option. But each case is different, so it’s important to consult a professional surgeon.
If you’re interested in breast augmentation, the Ruiz Castilla Institute will be happy to offer you expert guidance.