Kevin Small Mihye Choi Oriana Petruolo Christina Lee Nolan Karp
Aesthetic Surgery Journal, Volume 34, Issue 4, 1 May 2014, Pages 545–550
Published: 01 May 2014
Loss of volume after autologous fat transfer to the breast is well documented, and various methods to improve long-term survival of fat grafts have been investigated (including both distant and neighboring harvest sites), but no optimal technique has been identified.
The authors compare fat graft survival from 2 anatomical donor sites to determine whether there is an optimal site for fat graft harvesting in breast reconstruction.
Seventy-three patients (109 breasts) who received fat grafting to reconstructed breasts from 2009 to 2012 were enrolled in this retrospective study and divided into 2 groups: group A had fat harvested from the abdomen and group B from the thighs. Fat grafting was performed using a modified Coleman technique for symmetry. For all patients, 3-dimensional scans were obtained and volumes were analyzed.
Forty-six patients (66 breasts) received an average of 101 mL of fat injected from the abdomen, and 27 (43 breasts) received an average of 102 mL from the thighs. Group A had 82% volume retention at 16 days, 63% at 49 days, and 45% at 140 days. Group B had 86% at 16 days, 63% at 49 days, and 46% at 140 days (P > .05). Patients were also stratified by radiation exposure and volume injected; neither affected donor site volume retention (P > .05).
Our data suggest that donor site, regardless of volume injected or tissue radiation, did not affect volume retention in fat grafting. Longer-term studies are needed to assess the stability of the breast after fat grafting.