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Ghada Y. Afifi, MD, FACS
Board Certified Newport Beach Plastic Surgeon
You. Just Better.

Breast Fat Transfer

Dr. Afifi's Journey into Breast Fat Transfer:  GOT FAT?

Fat transfer to the breast is an exciting and still relatively new procedure that Dr. Ghada Afifi has specialized in for years.  Originally years ago, there were concerns in the plastic surgery community that fat transfer to the breast would be mistaken for possible cancer on mammograms and unnnecessary biopsies would be performed.  This has now been shown overwhelmingly by the radiology community NOT to be true:  radiologists can and do tell the difference between suspicious areas that may be cancerous versus scar tissue that may have been produced by surgery or fat transfer.

 Years before it became popular, Dr. Afifi started to transfer fat from undesirable ares such as the flanks (so called "love handles") to the buttocks to give a more curvy, shapely appearance to her patients.  She is now specialized in this procedure and countness patients have benefited and been transformed by this procedure, now popularly known as the "Brazilian Butt Lift."

 Dr. Afifi then encountered an originally small group of patients that either wanted:

1)  To remove breast implants due to recurrent problems such as hardening of the scar tissue around the implants, otherwise known as "capsule contracture." but still wished to have volume in there breasts despite not having new implants placed.

2)  To have increased fullness of their breasts but didn't want to have any breast implants placed at all.

Her initial patients had liposuction of areas done and had excess fat, and wished to have their breast implants removed, so she devised a modified technique in which small volumes of fat were carefully transferred in an artistic manner to the breast, almost "sculpting" a new prettier breast shape after scar tissue was removed.  This proved to be quite successful.

 Dr. Afifi then had other patients that wished to have breast enlargement but without implants.  They also wished liposuction, so it was a natural step - after confirming that fat transfer did not cause any development of cancer and was safe - to then transfer fat to the breast - a so called "natural breast enlargement."

 Thus she started asking her patient's "Got fat?"  - a humorous take on the "got milk?" that she heard from her young son.

 Now fat transfer to the breasts (as well as buttocks) is a common option that is presented to all her patients that had excess fat in areas that they didn't want when they presented and asked for breast (or buttock) enlargement.  She has followed her patients for years and her fat transfer "take" or fat survival averages at 75 to 85%, which is more than the average.

So if patients desire increased fullness in her breasts and ask for implants, she is happy to discuss all that breast implants have to offer, but she will also add to her consultations, "Got fat?"


 Fat transfer breast augmentation essentially uses liposuction to take fat from other parts of your body and inject it into your breasts. This is a breast augmentation option for women who are looking for a relatively small increase in breast size and would prefer natural results.

Fat transfer breast augmentation risks include:

  • Cysts
  • Infection
  • Microcalcification
  • Necrosis (death) of fat cells
  • Possibility that some of the transferred fat cells will leave the breast area

These are generally low risk. You may have to have touch-up injections to retain your improved shape if you choose this surgery.

Significant research on fat transfer breast augmentation has been done:

Breast augmentation involves many choices. The first and most important is selecting a board-certified plastic surgeon you can trust who is a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS).

ASPS member surgeons meet rigorous standards:

  • Board certification by the American Board of Plastic Surgery® (ABPS) or in Canada by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada®
  • Complete at least six years of surgical training following medical school with a minimum of three years of plastic surgery residency training
  • Pass comprehensive oral and written exams
  • Graduate from an accredited medical school
  • Complete continuing medical education, including patient safety, each year
  • Perform surgery in accredited, state-licensed, or Medicare-certified surgical facilities

Do not be confused by other official-sounding boards and certifications.

The ABPS is recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), which has approved medical specialty boards since 1934. There is no ABMS recognized certifying board with "cosmetic surgery" in its name.

By choosing a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, you can be assured that you are choosing a qualified, highly-trained plastic surgeon who is board-certified by the ABPS or the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada.


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