Fat Transfer for Breast Augmentation

What is Fat Transfer and Fat Grafting ?

Fat Grafting and Fat Transfer procedures use fat obtained with a specialized liposuction procedure to augment and shape the breast. In Dr. Sattler's Seattle area clinic, liposuction is one of the most frequently performed cosmetic surgery procedures. Dr. Sattler has developed a technique to use some of this purified fat from liposuction to augment and reshape the breast.

Fat Transfers for Breast Augmentation

The Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation Procedure offers a natural appearing breast augmentation and a comprehensive body liposuction treatment, all in one procedure. Dr. Sattler can take fat from a region where it is not wanted, like the abdomen, thighs or arms, and transfer that fat to the breasts.

The Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation technique in Dr. Sattler's Seattle area clinic avoids the use of an artificial saline or silicone breast implant. Fat that is removed with liposuction is injected into each breast to achieve a natural breast augmentation. The transferred fat becomes living tissue and augments the breast with a very natural appearance.

Fat transfer breast augmentation, fat graft breast augmentation, lipo transfer breast augmentation, and lipo-graft breast augmentation are all terms used to describe this exciting new procedure.

How is Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation done?

Regions targeted for liposuction are used as donor sites for fat grafts. These regions are typically the abdomen, love handles (flanks), and thighs. Candidates for the procedure must have a sufficient amount of fat to make Lipo-Augmentation possible.

On the day of the fat transfer procedure, liposuction is done to the thighs, abdomen and flanks. The fat that is obtained from liposuction is carefully prepared for fat transfer to the breast. The prepared and purified fat is injected into the breast using special fat grafting techniques through tiny incisions around the breast. The fat can be selectively grafted to add volume to portions of the breast in order to customize the augmentation for each patient. For example, fat can be injected to emphasize the lower pole volume of the breast, or to enhance breast cleavage.

The Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation is done in our private Seattle area operating room facility to maximize the comfort for Dr. Sattler's patients.

What is Recovery After Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation ?

Recovery after the procedure is similar the recovery time experienced with liposuction patients. Body compression garments is worn for two weeks over the regions treated with liposuction. Activity can be resumed as soon as it is comfortable to do so. Most patients are able to return to normal activities within a few days after the procedure.

Can pre-expansion with BRAVA help with Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation ?

In Dr. Sattler's extensive fat transfer experience, about one cup size increase can be achieved without BRAVA tissue expansion. A larger breast augmentation (greater than about 200 cc) does require the use of the BRAVA expansion device prior to Dr. Sattler's fat transfer breast augmentation procedure. Dr. Sattler generally recommends the use of BRAVA external expansion for 30 days prior to the fat transfer breast augmentation procedure for his Seattle area patients. 

Does Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation result in a balanced breast appearance?

Breast asymmetry and difference in shape can be balanced with the Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation procedure by Dr. Sattler. As the breast heals after surgery, some of the grafted fat will not become living tissue and will fade away. For this reason, touch-up fat injections under local anesthesia can be done to balance the breast appearance.

Fat grafting to the breast can be used to enhance the appearance of a breast previously augmented with an implant, or to improve breast volume during a breast lift procedure.

Will Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation effect mammography?

Some of the grafted fat will create benign calcifications on mammography. Since annual screening mammography is important for all women aged 40 and older (or earlier with family history of breast cancer), it is important to continue with screening mammography exams after Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation. As part of the pre-operative work up, all patients receive a screening mammogram, no matter what their age or risk factors are. A mammogram is recommended at one year after Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation and annually thereafter.


Breast fat grafting is becoming a more accepted and widely practiced method for breast augmentation. When making the choice between fat grafting and a silicone implant, I believe its important to consider the rate of revisionary surgery and ability to achieve a desired cosmetic end point. Fat grafting procedures are less reliable than the use of a silicone implant, and do result in a higher rate of reoperative surgery to balance volume and shaping. I believe it is easier and more cost-effective to achieve a breast augmentation using silicone implants than it is with autologous fat. I state these observations clearly to every fat grafting patient that I encounter. Its important to completely understand your cosmetic breast surgery options and alternatives before making an informed decision.

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Take The Next Step With Fat Transfer for Breast Augmentation

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Meet double board certified plastic surgeon Scott Sattler MD FACS

Scott Sattler, MD FACS

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