Why is a natural breast augmentation, NBA, becoming more popular over the traditional breast augmentation using implants?
Due to recent media coverage and concerns surrounding Breast Implant Associated Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma (BIA-ALCL), which is a rare type of lymphoma that can occur with textured silicone breast implants, women have become frightened that BIA-ALCL will happen to them. Another reason natural breast augmentation is becoming more popular is mainly in part due to the mindset of women associating varies illnesses with their implants, a phenomenon called breast implant illness syndrome. More and more women are becoming diagnosed with either chronic or acute diseases and putting the blame on extrinsic sources, including their breast implants. At this time, there is no concrete evidence that breast implants cause any acute or chronic systemic diseases other than BIA-ALCL as previously mentioned. Needless to say, breast implant illness syndrome is driving many patients to have their implants removed.
Regardless, breast implants pose a definite risk of immediate and long-term complications. Immediate complications can include infection and extrusion of the implant, meaning the implant pushes through the breast skin. Chronic complications can involve lateralization of the implants. This can occur due to many reasons. The most common is due to either the patient sleeping on their stomach or back without using a support bra. Lateralization results in breast implants being pushed into the armpit area, leaving a significant gap in the center of the chest. A second chronic complication of breast implants is capsular contracture. The most common cause of capsular contracture occurs overtime due to micro leaks of the silicone molecules through the implant shell, called “bleeding”. The body responds to this bleeding by adding scar tissue around the implant. With continued adding of scar tissue a thickened capsule can form resulting in contraction of the implant, making the implant firm and painful.
So why would one choose a natural breast augmentation?
Natural breast augmentation is a technique using fat instead of breast implants to achieve a larger fuller breast. NBA is accomplished using autologous fat grafting, by harvesting the patient’s own fat from different body parts, and injecting it into the breasts for a more natural look. Natural breast augmentation is an art form and requires a multi-step process. It is important when performing an NBA to not overfill the breast. If localized overfilling occurs, creating a taut breast, then fat survivability is compromised. This is because if too much fat is positioned in one glob or if the breast tissues become too tight, blood flow to the fat cells is compromised, resulting in fat death. Consequently, multiple sessions may be needed to ensure appropriate breast size depending on the desired breast cup. Natural breast augmentation is performed using a cross hatching technique from several incisions including the axilla and two inframammary crease ports. The procedure can take up to three sessions, with a maximum of 150-200 cc injected in each breast at each session dependent on the patient’s desired look. For example, the first session can include liposuction of the abdomen and subsequent injection into the breasts. The next session could include liposuction from the lateral chest and arms. Essentially, with NBA the patient achieves larger more voluminous breasts while shaping and reducing fat from the rest of the body, a two-in-one benefit. Additionally, natural breast augmentation allows your surgeon an artistic edge by being able to differentially fill the breasts as if using putty as opposed to implants where he/she is limited to a spherical object.
In summary, natural breast augmentation provides a real beneficial alternative to the traditional implant based augmentation. It is important to consult with a board certified plastic surgeon who specializes in high definition body contouring and breast surgery to discuss the best options for you. Natural breast augmentation provides the opportunity to improve both breast shape and size without the stigma of having a breast implant. If you are considering breast enhancement without an implant or if you desire the removal of your implant, we encourage you to schedule a complimentary consultation with Dr. Mowlavi today.
Here is a 35 year old female 3 months after her natural breast augmentation surgery.