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Patient-Reported Outcomes in Relation to Fat Grafting in Postmastectomy Breast Reconstruction

By: Cordi Craig
Posted: Monday, July 31, 2017

For women undergoing breast reconstruction, the use of fat grafting as an adjunct to breast mound reconstruction may improve breast satisfaction, psychosocial well-being, and sexual well-being, according to research led by Katelyn G. Bennett, MD, MS, of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and published in JAMA Surgery. Significantly lower scores were reported in breast satisfaction, psychosocial well-being, and sexual well-being 1 year after undergoing fat grafting postmastectomy. However, 2 years postoperatively, women who underwent fat grafting and those who did not reported similar results in terms of health and quality-of-life variables.

A total of 2048 women participated in this longitudinal, multicenter, prospective cohort study at 11 sites associated with the Mastectomy Reconstruction Outcomes Consortium Study. Women over 18 years of age presenting for breast reconstruction after mastectomy with 2 or more years of follow-up were eligible. Patients were excluded from the study if they had not completed breast mount reconstruction by the end of year 1 after starting reconstruction.

The investigators noted that proposed regulations from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration may place severe limitations on the use of fat grafting as an adjunct to breast reconstruction for contour irregularities and volume deficits. Dr. Bennett and colleagues concluded: “Our findings should bolster the ongoing assertion that fat grafting is an important tool in breast reconstruction, and that this option should remain available to reconstructive surgeons and the patients they serve.”