Fat Transfer to the Breasts - Winter Park, FL

To improve my distorted breasts. My journey...

To improve my distorted breasts.

My journey started in 2000' with the desire of having the "perfect" breasts when I was very young.  I went from a AA to a C and experienced moderate to severe capsular contracture with no resolution after trying to replace them under the muscle technique by another physician on 3 separate occasions.

Recently I chose to have both implants removed by my previous surgeon in August 2011 due to mastitis after delivering my last child as this only enhanced the capsular contracture in my breasts.  Unknowingly, this decision would change my life forever.  I experienced severe right breast skin retraction to the point of looking like a partial mastectomy due to infection from a hematoma/seroma that had developed after explantation.  My husband and I went through soo much emotionally to try and figure out how I could fix this new problem.

After watching a Dr. OZ tv episode, I came upon a fairly new technique where you can inject your own fat into your breasts and amazingly feel soft and mobile like regular breast tissue.  This moment was heaven sent to all my answers and I started researching local doctors in the orlando area.

I met with Dr. Hartog in October of 2011 and was amazed of the possibilities that lay ahead of me.  I understood that this process "took time" even though I am very impatient and wanted to see results immediately.  I was extremely impressed how thorough he was and his staff was amazingly helpful as well.  For once in my life, I found a doctor that made me feel important and listened to my concerns.  He has always taken time to evaluate my situation before making an indefinite surgical decision in pushing me in the right direction. 

This has been a long process as I have worn the brava bra for approximately 12 weeks now and had 2 fat transfer surgeries to date with great success.  My right breast may need a little more TLC but it's amazing with the right doctor and the right technique how this can change my life in a positive direction for the first time in 11 years.  Dr. Hartog and his staff have been soooo patient with me as I am soo critical about myself and always strive for perfection after the tremendous amount of heartache I have experienced with previous surgeons.

As of today, I have completed 2 more surgeries...

As of today, I have completed 2 more surgeries since my last review. The shape of my breasts have become more significantly better and able to feel comfortable in clothes including bathing attire. My 4th surgery was on August 22nd of 2012 and Dr. Hartog was able to finally find the scar band under the right nipple and release it from puckering in followed by injecting more fat soo the scar does not reattach. This is a huge accomplishment in my journey over the year. As of now, I am very happy to be where I am today a year later. I was hoping this was my last surgery but still would like the left breast to be filled in a little more on the bottom crease and towards cleavage to match the right. We have been concentrating on the right soo much that my other breast now looks smaller and not as round. However if you look at my history this is not a bad thing but just needs tweaked.

Final Update

Here I am 1.5 yrs post-op totaling 5 surgeries in all to reconstruct. As you can see I really need another surgery to fix the left side as the shape is not quite right but at this point I can't take anymore surgeries for now. Trying to just accept what I have and it's been a long but worth it journey with Dr. Hartog.
Orlando Plastic Surgeon

I am so thankful to have put my trust in him and his skills as my results show what a dedicated and experienced surgeon Dr. Hartog has become. In addition, it was wonderful to have his wife, Michelle, walk me through each stage and comfort me. I highly recommend Dr. Hartog and his services to everyone. Thanks Dr. Hartog for changing my life, putting a smile on my face and making feel beautiful again. ---Melissa S.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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I can't see your scars from augmentation or removal... You are really looking good. Glad you found your doctor. Where did you take the fat from to transfer. Do the sites look ok from where it was taken. I need to have fat transfer for botched lipo done on outer thighs and below butt. I only have fat in my flanks that can be taken. Wanted to know if you had fat taken from there and if so the quality of skin there and if you see cellulite or rippling of skin there. I have these effects on my thighs cause the ps took too much fat out. Thanks
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My scars healed really well utilizing the silicone scar cream suggested by my doc. I have one left that's being a little more stubborn but otherwise you can't see hardly anything. I had lipo done in the inner/outer thighs, butt, stomach flanks, lower/upper back 5x's. I have some cellulite on the back of my legs but nothing my surgeon did wrong but the normal aging of life. I really can't say anything negative about Dr. Hartog. He's an amazing surgeon. There are things that need to be touched up on my Breast but I always try to remind myself this is a technique that has made my life changed forever for the good. I try not to be critical on myself in wanting a "perfect Breast".
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I also paid for endermologie treatments that's like a deep massage utilizing a machine. It reduces swelling and smooths out irregularities. I also was told if you wear regular panties or other tight garments after lipo you can get permanent marks/lines where the pressure was placed.
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I also have a messed up breast after removal. I did not have infection,seroma or hematoma. I to had several revisions of implant. Always to become encapsulated. Left side was always the worst. In a sense through out my augmented years I was always self conscious of there appearance. Felt hard when I hugged people. Had to have special cushioning put down to get message. When my implant were removed you could actually feel down between my ribs. So with the first transfer I now have more fat on underneath side and my ribs are as they should be. The fat did not stay/survive in dip above nipple. He also released some of the scar tissue as well. I will be going for my 2nd transfer soon. I hope he can find enough fat to keep me from looking like partial mastectomy...like you said. I have not been in swim suit. Tried some on...just made me cry. I really can't afford to keep doing this. Still glad to be rid of implants. Be glad to find a bra that won't ride up over my left boob. I will get a pic up before procedure. Thank you for sharing your experience.
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Beautiful breasts! You look great Mel. Wow what an epic journey you have been on with them. Mel could you tell me how long you waited between each transfer and how much cc your Dr put in each time? Ps thank you do much for sharing your story x
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Thanks:). The amount of CC varied each time depending on how much fat I had to work with. If I remember correctly Dr. Hartog did about 200cc each the first time but stored the addt'l fat for the second surgery in his cryofreeze. He specializes in trying to take as much fat as possible and then you can store it for future surgeries. I had almost enough to complete another surgery (I think he's learned after me to be more aggressive on getting more fat when storing) with the leftovers about 150-200cc each. I had to wait 3-6 weeks in btwn for healing and allowing the first set of fat to be accepted by my body. I pretty much wore the brava nonstop for a year. I did take a break after my third one and waited a few months so I wasn't overloading my body with surgeries. After the second Procedure I had to go through more liposuctions each time. At this point I don't really have enough fat to make it worth while to finish the left breast shaping underneath:(. Someday I would like to finish it and also pray a diff tech will be available where I may not need my own fat... If that tech is ever figured out.
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3-6 six weeks is very close together, my Dr suggested that I could have my next AFT at 6 weeks but have read that 3mths is better. Do you think the stored frozen fat took aaa well as the fresh?
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Sorry that came out wrong the way I typed it. It was 6 weeks for actual surgery in btwn time spans. I would wear brava at no extra suction for 3 weeks to help blood supply for new transfer success after surgery n then do full brava 10-13hrs with the extra bulb suction for 3 more weeks before my next surgery. All my surgeries were successful fresh and frozen. I even participated in a year of scans through ultrasound and MRI for a year to monitor my breasts which showed minimal to no fat death seen. My breasts have not changed shape or size since my last surgery in Jan of 2013. He did a great Job
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Mel you look great. I don't think I could do 5 surgeries. I go on Friday July 11th for my 2nd and last fat transfer. Am sitting is Brava domes as I type.
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Thank you. I sure don't miss my "dollies" as I called my brava!! We had a love-hate relationship...lol
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My husband says he's using mine for target practice, after Friday he says he never wants to see them again...lol
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hi. i have consulted with dr. hartog, but as of now my insurance wont' cover it. i am worse off than you were after the explant. so my surgeon that took them out for me in sarasota offered to do some small fat grafting, and a lift for me at no charge. i am lumpy, and HARD. there was no brava....my road has been really really tough as i am sure you can empathize. there is a possiblity that i could still go to dr. hartog if i can get insurance to cover and this doesn't work. i am torn about what to do. i read so many different things on line about what to expect after this. i have so many questions. i was wondering if you might be willing to give me some advice, or talk about it. a phone call or personal email or even meet up for coffee or something....i'm just lost. about ready to just accept it all and give up since i can't afford anything more, i'm tired of doing anything, and my body seems to just not accept anything yet that i've tried. it's just so hard to give up and look like i do.....and not want to keep trying. but keeping at this is so depressing....urrgghh. i was so hopeful that this lift and fat graft would get me to a place i could at least wear a bra in front of my husband, but it hasn't really.... ah, please let me know if you'd be willing to go a little more in depth with me about your experience to help mine along?
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I also have similar results. I'm looking for a doctor to do fat transfer too. I have a million questions. To Brava or not to Brava. I am also self pay and not sure I can afford to continue to have multiple surgeries. Did you have to pay full price for each fat trasfer session?
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Hi sorry I took soo long to answer back. I'd be more than willing to talk.
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The brava is a huge component to your success. It stretches your matrix within the breasts to allow oxygen through increased blood flow to feed the new fat transfer. If not properly done the % of fat to survive declines and that's where you get lumps which are dead areas of fat that turn into hard like cysts. I highly recommend it but trust me the brava I call "dolly" is a pain in the rear. Lol. Dr. Hartog worked a lot with me when It came to the financial part as I was all self pay. I have done 5 surgeries to date and really need one last surgery to clean up the differences In shape and size. My body couldn't take any more and decided to stop. It's been 1.5 yrs since my last surgery and still look amazing. Dr. Hartog is the top doc I feel to help out others like myself.
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Hi. My situation is similar to yours, and I just did my first and only fat transfer. I am 2 weeks post op and have been feeling weird. Kind of like a panic attack but it's constant. It almost depressing feeling. Just wondering if you were feeling the same way the first time and did it go away? I am worried that it's permanant, maybe from the fat removal causing some kind of hormonal imbalance? What do you think? I am hoping it is temporary
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Perhaps your having some late reaction to anesthesia...just guessing. Any new meds? I feel the same depression I did prior to surg. As he couldn't fill in the very flat area. But he did get some in there as I know longer feel my ribs. Are you not happy with your results? I had a lot of anxiety initially worrying about the graft living. I myself have general anxiety disorder, a swell as depression and am on med. you need to talk with someone about what is going on with you. Either your pcp or ps. There are meds that can just get you through this. Doesn't mean you will always be on them. I've not looked at your pics yet. How is your donor site doing? I am massaging the heck out of my belly. Hang in there. Please talk to some one and see if you can get some meds. I know that panic feeling : ( please keep in touch. We can chat on phone if you would like.
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I haven't taking any meds besides what dr bednar prescribed. I hat taking pills and hoping it's just from the anesthesia or healing and hoping it's temporary. It's not that I'm not happy with results as i don't know what the final result is since I have a lot of healing still to go. I don't know why I'm feeling this way. I just want to get back to normal but I can't yet even exercise and have never sat around this much before, so maybe that is my problem. I am getting around now and doing things but it's not the same as going for a long bike ride or hike. I also was depressed before surgery about my deformed breasts but it was a panic feeling as it is right now. I am going to give it some more time to see if it goes away In the next month. Thank you so much and I will keep you in mind
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I never had any hormonal like episodes during surgeries. Just the typical depression state of trying to accept what was. It was very trying times for me as well and still is at times
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I was very excited to come upon your post. If you look at my pics we have one breast that was very similar. I just spoke with my PS last week about fat transfer. When they did your first procedure was your right breast very soft and moveable? Did you have much pain in the breast or donor sites? I am hoping not to miss much work. Any advice, suggestions would be most welcome. Your pictures give me hope! Thanks so much for sharing?
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When I had my first surgery it took a while to really feel what my breasts were like bcus I did back to back surgeries for over a year. The brava was stuck to me like glue for a long time:/. In the end though my breasts are very soft and the hard areas softened up and feel like real ones. I am extremely satisfied. After healing time my pain is no longer existent. Donor sites took a while to heal. My first surgery I blew up like a mushroom from lipo but the other 4 were not bear as bad. My tolerance for pain and results improved with each surgery
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How are you doing now Mel? Do you have any updated photos? I am sorry for all that you went through. It has been a long process but you look good.
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Thanks soo much. I am doing great and trying too be life with what I have. That's been the hardest part
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Mel, result looks great, really! Post pic when you will be done with the last treatment. :)))))))))))))))) cri
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Thanks soo much!!! Yes I need to take pics and show how consistent my breast remained after 1.5 yrs from my 5th surgery. I'll def do that and sorry to all of you I haven't been keeping up with my post
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