Reversing Fibrosis and Skin Changes After Breast Cancer Surgery with Fat Grafting
Breast cancer is one of the most prevalent forms of cancer among women worldwide. Treatment for breast cancer varies, and surgery, such as mastectomy or lumpectomy, is often necessary. However, after such surgeries, patients may experience skin changes, fibrosis, and tissue loss, which can negatively affect their quality of life. In a recent interview, Dr. Daniel Calva and Dr. Roger Khouri, Plastic Surgeons for Baptist Health South Florida, discuss the use of fat grafting as a technique to reverse these changes and improve the appearance of the breast.
One common issue after breast conservation surgery, or lumpectomy, is the need for radiation therapy to prevent cancer recurrence. Unfortunately, radiation therapy can cause fibrosis, skin changes, and tissue loss in the breast. Fat grafting is a technique that involves harvesting fat from other parts of the body through liposuction and injecting it into the breast. This procedure has stem cells and regenerative properties that can help to reverse the damage caused by radiation.
Dr. Calva explains that after a lumpectomy, fat grafting can be used to reconstruct the breast by filling the hole left by the cancer removal. The fibrotic reaction of the tissues induced by radiation can cause skin changes such as hyperpigmentation, but fat grafting can help reverse these changes. The procedure can also improve the appearance of the breast by making it look more natural and symmetrical.
Moreover, Dr. Khouri adds that fat grafting can reverse the fibrosis of radiation. Radiation kills cancer cells, but it also destroys the cells responsible for the normal upkeep of the tissue. As a result, the tissue can wither away over time. However, fat grafting can replenish the supply of healthy cells, reversing the radiation damage. One or two sessions of fat grafting can bring back the tissue to normal, which can improve the breast’s appearance and the patient’s quality of life.
Fat grafting is a safe and effective procedure that can help reverse the damage caused by radiation therapy and improve the appearance of the breast. This innovative technique has become a popular option for breast cancer patients who have undergone surgery and radiation therapy. It can also be an alternative to traditional breast reconstruction methods that involve implants or tissue transfer. Patients interested in fat grafting should consult with a qualified plastic surgeon to determine whether the procedure is right for them.