When plastic surgeon Laurie A. Casas, MD of Chicago, Illinois, said she tries to avoid breast augmentation, we were very interested in what she had to say. The Plastic Surgery Channel recently interviewed Dr. Casas about one of the most popular plastic surgery procedures today.
“I like to avoid breast augmentation,” stated Dr. Casas, a board certified and highly distinguished leader in the field of breast surgery.
By Carolynn Grimes and
Laurie A. Casas, MD
It’s really pretty simple. “It’s a foreign device and it will eventually fail,” says Casas. Based on the fact that implants do not last forever, Casas has acquired a slightly different approach to breast augmentation. If the patient has enough breast tissue, why put in an implant? The choice to get implants means that you most likely will be looking at subsequent breast surgeries in your lifetime. “If I can create a pretty breast with your own tissue, then that’s what I prefer to do,” says Casas.
The Breast Consultation
“Women who come in for a breast consultation often talk about their breasts being too large, too small, or being too saggy. And when the breasts lose volume and elasticity, there’s no diet or exercise program in the world that can fix that,” explains Casas.
Dr. Casas routinely performs a procedure she calls, Auto-Augmentation Mastopexy. In this procedure she uses a woman’s own breast tissue to re-shape the breast without an implant. She co-authored an article detailing the surgery in the Aesthetic Surgery Journal publication. “I take the saggy tissue and I move it under the central part of the breast. I can also narrow the base of the breast and use their own tissue to augment the breast,” describes Casas. This is for the patient who loves their breast size but hates their breast shape.
Gravity = Sagging Breasts
Gravity compounded with pregnancy, breast feeding, and weight changes can have a downward pull on a woman’s breasts. Many women find themselves with low breasts that have lost some of their previous volume and elasticity. Casas says women will often tell her their sagging breasts make them feel like an old lady. Not a pleasant feeling and one of the top reasons breast augmentation and breast lifts have remained at the top of the ‘most popular’ plastic surgery statistics. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), breast lift procedures are growing at twice the rate of breast implant surgeries. Since 2000, breast lifts have grown by 70 percent, outpacing implants two-to-one.
Patient Selection is Key
The key to re-shaping without an implant says Casas, is patient selection. “You have to have enough tissue for me to create that round, pretty breast. The second most important part is, where is the breast on your chest wall?” For those women whose breasts sit low on the chest, this procedure can elevate the breast and give it a better shape.
Patients, however, with poor skin elasticity are not good candidates for this approach. The recent article in the Aesthetic Surgery Journal, concludes, “In select patients with adequate breast volume and moderate to good skin elasticity with mild to severe ptosis who do not desire an implant mammaplasty, this technique safely and effectively restores the contour of a youthful-appearing breast.”