Amanda Null is just 33 years old, but is already battling breast cancer.
“I have had four months worth of chemo, I had the double mastectomy and I recently started radiation,” she said.
Now, Amanda is trying a new method, called the BRAVA System, to rebuild her breasts. Instead of traditional implants, she will wear a cup-shaped device.
“A suction is provided and this sort of recruits additional tissue into this cup,” plastic surgeon Dr. Mahlon Kerr said.
As the breast takes shape, doctors take fat from the person's body. They then inject the fat into the breast to create scaffolding. The procedure can be done over a series of small, outpatient procedures, according to Dr. Kerr.
The result is a new breast, built with the person's own fat. Doctors say it works better than implants, and the patient even has control over breast size.
“Its soft, it feels natural,” plastic surgeon Dr. Amy Bekanich said. “When you gain weight or lose weight, it does that with you, versus with the other technique which doesn’t necessarily do that.”
The BRAVA System itself isn't new, but using it in this way is a first for Central Texas. It is available at both St. David's North Austin Medical Center and St. David's Round Rock Medical Center.
Visit StDavids.com for more information.