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Does Natural Breast Augmentation Interfere with Breast Cancer Screenings?

Posted October 21, 2014 in Natural Breast Augmentation

woman in black strapless braDid you know…

  • Breast cancer is the second leading cause of death in women.
  • One in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime.
  • Early cancer detection results in a 98 percent 5-year survival rate.

Statistics like these remind us of the seriousness of breast cancer and the importance of early detection. Especially in October, Breast Cancer Awareness Month, many women want to take extra precautions when it comes to anything that would cause cancer to progress or potentially prevent an accurate cancer diagnosis.

No Evidence of Increased Susceptibility With Natural Breast Augmentation

Back in 1987, a position paper was published by the American Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons about natural breast augmentation (fat grafting to the breast) that suggested it should be prohibited. According to the author, fat grafting to the breasts should be deemed unsafe because it compromises breast cancer detection. The procedure was singled out from other cosmetic surgeries, when in fact, there is no evidence that fat grafting to the breasts is less safe than any other form of breast surgery. One of the risks, although rare, with any breast surgery is the development of calcification that can look similar to breast cancer in a mammogram.

Radiologists Are Trained to Know the Difference

Many women who have some of the unchangeable risk factors for breast cancer, such as genetics, a family history of breast cancer, or a personal history of breast cancer, may shy away from the idea of breast augmentation with fat transfer because of this risk. These women should take into consideration that any woman can minimize their risk for misdiagnosis by simply telling their radiologist they’ve had the procedure done. Because fat grafting to the breasts has become such a common procedure within the last two decades, radiologists now receive training in determining the difference between a benign cyst that has developed from breast surgery and a carcinoma.

According to The American Journal of Medicine, cancer misdiagnosis rates are only roughly 15 percent of all new cancer diagnoses. This percentage also includes delayed diagnoses or failure to recognize cancer. Most often, misdiagnoses occur due to other inflammatory breast conditions, such as mastitis and fibrocystic breast disease, which have symptoms similar to cancer but do not result from natural breast augmentation.

Benefits of Natural Breast Augmentation

Fat grafting to the breasts has revolutionized the safety and effectiveness of breast augmentation in so many ways. Women can now get a much more natural breast appearance without the many risks and long recovery time associated with breast implant surgery, and they can do so while reducing fat from another area of their body at the same time. Fat grafting is also widely used to soften visible implant edges in thin patients or in those who have thin skin. In breast reconstruction surgery, fat grafting is routinely used to correct subtle deformities and provide missing coverage.

As an expert in fat grafting to the breasts, Dr. O’Neil performs this procedure with extreme precision, harvesting and refining the patient’s fat with minimal trauma. The result is a natural breast shape that breast implants alone cannot achieve. While there is a risk of development of mammographic changes after this procedure, it is rare and can occur with any breast surgery. This risk alone should not deter someone from considering this procedure.

If you are interested in breast augmentation with fat grafting or have further questions about natural breast augmentation, please schedule a consultation with Dr. Kelly O’Neil by calling (888) 820-5762. For your convenience, you may also fill out our online contact form.