The number of breast reconstruction surgeries has been increasing due to the increase in mastectomies. Surgical implants (the standard polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) implants) are widely used to reconstruct breast tissues, however, it can cause problems such as adverse immune reactions, fibrosis, rupture, and additional surgery. Hence, polymeric fillers have recently garnered increasing attention as strong alternatives for breast reconstruction materials. Polymeric fillers offer noninvasive methods of reconstruction, thereby reducing the possible adverse effects and simplifying the treatment. In this study, we synthesized a 2-hydroxylethylmethacrylate (HEMA) and acrylamide (Am) copolymer (Poly(HEMA-Am)) by redox polymerization to be used as a biocompatible filler material for breast reconstruction. The synthesized hydrogel swelled in phosphate buffered saline (PBS) shows an average modulus of 50 Pa, which is a characteristic similar to that of the standard dermal acrylamide filler. To investigate the biocompatibility and cytotoxicity of the Poly(HEMA-Am) hydrogel, we evaluated an in vitro cytotoxicity assay on human fibroblasts (hFBs) and human adipose-derived stem cells (hADSCs) with the hydrogel eluate, and confirmed a cell viability of over 80% of the cell viability with the Poly(HEMA-Am) hydrogel. These results suggest our polymeric hydrogel is a promising filler material in soft tissue augmentation including breast reconstruction.
Kim, S., Shin, B. H., Yang, C., Jeong, S., Shim, J. H., Park, M. H., … Lee, K. (2018). Development of poly(HEMA-Am) polymer hydrogel filler for soft tissue reconstruction by facile polymerization. Polymers, 10(7). https://doi.org/10.3390/polym10070772