During breast cancer treatment, some women may undergo a lumpectomy rather than full mastectomy. Lumpectomy reconstruction via fat grafting can help correct abnormal contours for a natural breast shape again.
Breast cancer surgeon Dr. Ricardo A. Meade is a board certified plastic surgeon serving the entire Dallas-Ft. Worth metro area, with offices in Dallas and Plano, Texas. In addition to a full range of options for reconstructive breast surgery, Dr. Meade offers a number of cosmetic surgery procedures for both men and women.
As our understanding of breast cancer improves, more surgeons are invested in preserving as much natural breast tissue as possible. This can be accomplished by treating patients with radiation or chemotherapy first in order to shrink tumors until they’re small enough to be removed by a lumpectomy instead of the complete removal of one or both breasts. Although there are definite benefits to taking this less invasive approach to breast cancer treatment, lumpectomy can leave behind indentations, scarring or an irregular breast shape that can be improved using fat grafting.
Please contact us online or call 214.823.1691 for more information on lumpectomy reconstruction at our Dallas or Plano plastic surgery offices. We encourage you to view breast reconstruction photos in our real patient before and after photo gallery to get a better sense of what this procedure can achieve.
During your consultation with Dr. Meade, you can go over the questions and goals you have about your lumpectomy reconstruction. Dr. Meade will also conduct a physical evaluation to ensure that you’re a good candidate for the procedure, and talk more about what you can expect.
If your insurance company provides coverage for your lumpectomy, then they are also required by U.S. law to also cover any necessary reconstructive procedures, including surgery on the opposite breast to ensure symmetry between sides, if needed. Our staff will give you a detailed cost estimate for your fat grafting reconstruction, and will also help you organize any necessary documentation for your insurance provider.
Preparing for Surgery
As the date for your reconstructive surgery gets closer, Dr. Meade may request specific lab tests or medical evaluations, including a mammogram. He may also request that you adjust certain medications, vitamins or supplements you may currently be taking. For optimum healing, Dr. Meade advises that you avoid the consumption of alcohol and drugs and abstain from smoking for a certain amount of time before and after surgery.
The Fat Grafting Reconstruction Procedure
Fat grafting is actually a two-part process that begins with liposuction to collect stem cell-rich fat cells from a donor area of the body, typically the abdomen or hips. The fatty tissue is processed through a centrifuge to separate and concentrate the stem cells, which are then mixed back in with the fat cells before Dr. Meade injects them into the lumpectomy site. The presence of the stem cells can help encourage a higher number of viable fat cells to thrive at the transfer site, or may even develop into fat cells themselves.
Because the cells are taken from your own body, the risks of rejection after transfer are negated, as well as concerns over adverse side effects. And, since a fine-gauge needle is used to inject the fat cells, incisions on the breast are unnecessary.
Recovery & Results
Since fat grafting lumpectomy reconstruction is a much less invasive procedure compared to full breast reconstruction, the recovery period is typically both brief and routine. You may experience some soreness or swelling at the donor site where fat cells were collected, although you will likely see some slimming benefits of the liposuction performed in that area as well.
Following your lumpectomy reconstruction, you should see an improvement in your breast contours right away. Although not all transferred fat cells remain viable, the majority that thrive should give you long-term, natural results without the need for further reconstruction surgery.