While some women may balk at the idea of putting fat into
their bodies, for some breast cancer survivors, it just might be the answer.
Special suction cups plus fat injections equals a new breast reconstruction option for some women like Maria Eugenia Morris. She had a double mastectomy last year.
“Up to now I am very happy," said Morris. "My breasts feel normal like my breasts before. They’re not hard. They’re beautiful I think.”
Dr Roger Khouri
, a Miami plastic surgeon, invented the Brava System
which has two gel-padded plastic cups and a small battery powered motor “that contains a suction that keeps the suction in range," Dr. Khouri explained. "Tubing connects the two and then they have the bra. They wear it inside the bra. From the outside this pulls on the skin. Women have to wear this for a few hours a day for a few weeks.”
Though Brava is advertised as a breast enlargement system for women naturally less in dowd, on Sunday, 200 surgeons from different areas of the country and the world will be coming to South Miami Hospital to learn about using the Brava System and fat grafting to rebuild breasts on women who have undergone mastectomies.
Eugenia describes how it feels: “It is uncomfortable. I’m not going to say that it’s comfortable, but it is not painful. And the end result I think is worthwhile.”
It takes a while for the suction to expand the breast area. When it's ready to be filled, fat is manually removed from one area of the body then injected into the breast, several times over a period of several months.
“Not every woman is willing to go through the multiple stages that may be required with fat injection,” said Dr. Robert DerHagopian, director of The Baptist Health Breast Center
. But for some, he calls this novel and promising.
"You have to have the right patient who wants to be motivated to do it," Dr. DerHagopian said. "For that patient who doesn’t want an implant and a big operation, this may be the way to go.”