HealthWatch (WFRV) A woman's risk of developing breast or ovarian cancer is greatly increased if she inherits a mutation in the BRCA gene.
When Kari Kristof's sister was diagnosed with breast cancer, Kari had herself tested.
"I was a BRCA gene carrier and my sister passed away at 35 so I didn't want to go through what she went through," explained Kari Kristof.
And even though she didn't have breast cancer, Kari decided to have a double mastectomy because she carried the BRCA gene.
"I have three young children and they need their mom," explained Kari.
But there were complications during Kari's breast reconstruction. Kari's new tissue died leaving her breasts misshapen..
"One side was twice as large as the other," said Kari.
So Kari went to Aurora BayCare Medical Center for help. Plastic surgeon Dr. Steven Schmidt says Kari was a good candidate for fat grafting.
"if there is a patient who has adequate fat in an area we can harvest that with traditional liposuction techniques then prepare that fat, inject that fat into the areas where we need it," explained Dr. Steven Schmidt, Aurora BayCare Medical Center plastic surgeon.
Dr. Schmidt used the new Revolve fat harvesting device instead of the more conventional method of fat grafting.
"This allows us to process larger volumes of fat in a shorter period of time. Which is helpful to our patients, the longer a patients on the operating table the riskier it is, as well as the more expensive," said Dr. Schmidt.
Dr. Schmitt moved fat from Kari's sides and stomach to her chest. Kari is satisfied with how her breasts look and how much smaller her sides and stomach are.
"My sides are yeah, by far. I love it. Because I feel good about myself now, said Kari.
Even with the complications, Kari does not regret having the double mastectomy. She has not developed breast cancer.
Aurora BayCare is the survivor sponsor of the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk.
It's Saturday October 26th at Ashwaubenon High School. The walk begins at 9 a.m.
To learn more you can call Aurora BayCare at (920) 288-8000 or email