While the variety of mammaplasty techniques has grown by leaps and bounds, assessing their outcomes accurately remains a challenge. This has led a team of plastic surgeons in Italy to devise a method for evaluating post-mammaplasty breast symmetry.
The authors devised an objective symmetry-evaluation method based on statistical analysis of objective manual breast measurements. They validated the method by applying it to the results of a randomized controlled trial on the correction of breast asymmetry.
The team enrolled 60 consecutive patients with hypoplastic breasts and small-volume asymmetry and randomly assigned them to one of two groups. Patients in one group received a fixed-volume implant in one breast and an adjustable-volume implant in the other, while patients in the second group received two fixed-volume implants of different sizes. The differences in specific breast and chest measurements, obtained before surgery and during follow-up, were analyzed using the Wilcoxon signed-rank test.
The authors write that the correction of asymmetry resulted in the reduction of differences between left and right values for each specific breast measurement. Placement of an adjustable implant on one side yielded better symmetry than the two fixed-volume prostheses of different sizes. Patient and physician satisfaction was high for both groups.
“The most significant finding of our study is the possibility to obtain objective measurements about breast symmetry with a simple and inexpensive method based on manual measurements that are routinely taken prior to surgical intervention and at standardized post-operative intervals,” study author Nefer Fallico, M.D., of Sapienza University in Rome, tells Cosmetic Surgery Times. “This is an advantage both for plastic surgeons, who do not have to invest in special devices such as 3D imaging, and for patients, who do not need to undergo several investigations.”
The study appears in the November 2014 issue of the Aesthetic Surgery Journal.