Stem Cells solution for bigger breast

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Breast augmentation procedures are on the rise. In USA alone, more than 350,000 women have their breast enlarged each year. In Britain about 30,000 women underwent cosmetic breast enlargement last year.

A new type of breast augmentation is now being tested at the London Breast Institute in the United Kingdom. It uses stem cells from the extra fat in a woman’s stomach or thighs and implanting them into the bust.

Half of the extracted fat is treated to separate out the stem cells. These stem cells are then added back into the rest of the fat and injected over time into the breast tissue to increase their volume

Unlike regular cells, stem cells are able to self-renew and regenerate tissue. Breast augmentation using stem cells provide a more natural feel and look than conventional implants because they are made of the body’s own cells and tissues rather than foreign implants such as silicone and saline.

The trial is currently used to repair the breasts of women who have had cancerous lumps removed. Soon healthy women seeking breast enlargement will start to use this new technique.

This stem cell therapy could boost breast size by at least a cup and at the same time reduce fat in the stomach and thighs. This is “killing two birds with one stone”. The cost for this procedure is estimated to be about US$13,000.

This treatment offers considerable improvement over conventional cosmetic surgery using implants, which may leak, cause scarring and require replacement.

Although this technique enlarges the breast, the increase in size is modest and it will not provide firmness and uplift. Research is currently being done to see if bigger augmentation is possible.

This technique is in fact not new. In the year 2004, Dr. Kotaro Yoshimura, a surgeon at Tokyo University Medical School founded this same technique and had treated 39 patients with no major problems.  It was used initially to treat women with breast deformities caused by cancer treatments and more recently, for cosmetic breast augmentation in healthy women. It is not available in USA and is currently under medical review. It is legal in the EU and trials on about 30 women are expected to take place around the middle of 2009 at the London Breast Institute.

The use of this technique for cosmetic surgery on healthy women is controversial. Medical bodies have argued that this technique should not be offered to healthy women until large-scale trials in cancer patients are proven safe and effective.

So women all over the world, stay tuned.

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