Implants vs. Fat Transfer

It used to be that when you were looking into breast augmentation surgery, your only option was to get implants. But as techniques in plastic surgery advance, fat transfer has become another option for increasing the size of your breasts. At Michigan Plastic Surgery, we offer both breast augmentation with implants, or augmentation with fat transfer. Because breast enhancement is such a personal choice, we wanted to give you some information about the advantages of both procedures so that you can more easily choose the one that is right for you.

Size and Shape

In this category, fat transfer and implant augmentation have very specific advantages. With implants, the idea is to choose a size and shape according to your body proportions and your desired results. If you’re looking for a more natural look, anatomic implants may be the right option, while round implants will provide more fullness in the upper pole of your breasts. With fat transfer, the size increase is minimal - you can expect to go up a cup size at most, whereas implants allow a significant size change. However, fat transfer can be a better option if you’re trying to correct specific deformities, asymmetries, or scarring, as the process allows for more precise correction. 


No matter which method of augmentation you choose, both require about two months of reduced activity. Both processes require incision care (either in the breasts or at the site of the fat removal). In both cases, a specialized support bra must be worn at all times for a total of six weeks following surgery. Light activity after surgery is possible, but you should avoid strenuous physical activities or heavy lifting for at least four to six weeks. Your breasts will be swollen immediately after surgery, however, the swelling will subside gradually, revealing your final results within a few weeks.


The surgical techniques for breast augmentation with implants versus fat transfer are completely different, so this may be where your decision changes. If you are getting implants, you will be put under general anesthesia, and Dr. Awada will make the incisions. The implant is then placed in a pocket that is created either under the skin or under your pectoral muscle, and moved into the correct position. Dr. Awada will complete the surgery by closing the incisions, and you’re moved to recovery.

If you opt for fat transfer for your breast augmentation, the procedure is vastly different. The areas where the fat will be harvested from are marked and numbed, and the fat is extracted using a liposuction technique that carefully prevents damage to the fat cells. The fat is then cleaned and processed to remove any fluids or excess tissue, leaving only pure fat that is ready for injection. The fat cells are injected carefully into the breasts, allowing Dr. Awada to shape and sculpt the breasts as desired. Fat transfer is a more time-consuming surgery than implants, but the results of both are beautiful, contoured breasts.

Whether you choose implants or fat transfer for your breast augmentation, your results are considered permanent. However, as with any procedure, longevity and quality will depend on whether you maintain a healthy weight. Your breasts will also continue to age naturally, so some volume loss or change in contour over time is normal. Whatever procedure you choose, the staff at Michigan Plastic Surgery look forward to making your breast augmentation experience a pleasant one, giving you the results you desire. To schedule an appointment for a consultation, call us today at 248-948-5500. 

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