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A Kinder, Gentler, More Beautiful Approach To Breast Reconstruction

Are Stem Cells the Future of Breast Reconstruction?

The best way to achieve a natural look and feel after breast reconstruction is a subject that’s always at the forefront of any reconstructive surgeon’s mind, along with potential ways that existing surgical techniques could be further refined and improved. It’s not surprising, then, that the medical buzz about stem cells would eventually apply to reconstructive breast surgery as well. Could stem cells become a beneficial part of breast reconstruction after cancer in the future?


The Power of Stem Cells

Stem cells are unique within the body in that they are capable of growing into any type of specialized cell. The potential implications of stem cell use in medical applications include regrowth of cartilage for arthritic joints, or even transplants that are performed using organs grown from stem cells, negating the need for donors. The idea of using stem cells in combination with reconstructive breast surgery is not to grow a new breast, however, but instead to enhance the efficacy of a process that’s already in use: fat grafting.

Fat Grafting in Breast Reconstruction

Fat grafting involves the collection of fat cells from an area of the patient’s body and subsequent injection into another area—in this case, the breast. Fat transfer can help correct irregular contours following a lumpectomy without the need for synthetic implants. Yet, the results of fat grafting can be inconsistent, as not all cells remain viable after the transfer.

Recent research indicates that including stem cells as part of the transfer process can decrease resorption rates significantly, delivering much more reliable results and a potentially feasible alternative to implant- or flap-based reconstruction in the future. Although significantly more research is needed before stem cell breast reconstruction techniques are considered feasible or even available, the implications are certainly hopeful.

Dr. Nirav Savalia


Dr. Savalia is known for the most innovative, advanced breast reconstruction techniques. He is a board certified plastic surgeon and artist who creates the most natural, elegant, personalized aesthetic results. He is as renown for his care and compassion as he is for extraordinary outcomes. This is why he was named one of Orange County’s Physicians of Excellence by his peers.

A Team Approach for the Best Breast Care Possible

Dr. Savalia’s Breast Health Center team includes the finest oncologists, radiation specialists, geneticists, and nurse navigators. Being cared for by an established team is a great advantage for patients.

"I prefer a light-handed approach that leaves my patients looking visibly rejuvenated, not surgically enhanced."

What Dr. Savalia's Patients Are Saying


Dr. Savalia is a very gifted surgeon and has true artistic ability. I would HIGHLY recommend Dr. Savalia for any type of plastic surgery. He truly exceeded my expectations. I feel very fortunate to have worked with him and his team and if I ever have any need for a plastic surgeon in the future he will be my first choice.

- RIMA, AGE 55

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