Fat transfer to the face
Autologous fat transfer
As time goes on we learn more and more about the benefits of auto-fat transfer. Similar to fillers we are able to smooth the transitions from the eyes to the cheeks, from the cheeks to the mouth, from the chin to the neck and make the face look younger and healthier. It is the decent and loss of the many fat pockets in the face that gives an aged appearance and we are able to improve this with auto-fat transfer.
Stem cells are transferred along with the fat and this rejuvenates the deep layers of the skin and helps to make the skin look more youthful and vibrant. The benefit of fat compared to synthetic fillers is that a portion of the fat transfer will be permanent. For every patient the goals are different and we are able to build a treatment plan specific to you.
Goals of Surgery:
The real goal of fat transfer is to balance and create a smooth transition from each facial subunit to another. By replacing the lost fat and contouring the transition zones of the face we are able to give an overall rejuvenated look. When the eyes become demarcated from the cheeks and brows and the cheeks demarcated from the temples, neck and lips it results in a stark and aged look with shadows and pockets that are exaggerated in photos. These are the transition points we focus on with auto-fat transfer. We are also able to raise eyebrows, plump lips and define the jawline with this procedure.
What results can I expect from fat transfer? What can be treated with fat transfer?
This is my favorite cosmetic procedure. In Orange County 70% of my cosmetic patients underwent fat transfer to the face. This is because the results are predictable and expedient.
Depending on the amount of fat transferred the following can be treated with fat transfer: Orbital bags, tear trough deformity, hallow eyes, sagging skin, nasolabial folds, cheek folds, deflated lips, deficient chin projection, marionette lines, jaw line, temple hallowing, brow ptosis and skin aging.
What is the postoperative course like for fat transfer to the face?
Auto-fat transfer requires harvesting of the fat from either the belly area or the lateral thigh. The harvest location will be sore and swollen for a few days postoperatively. The face will be “over-injected” and swollen for 1-2 wks. This is because only a certain percentage (most clinical studies state from 30-40%) will stay and live at the transferred site for ever. That is good because the changes can be permanent. It is bad because it requires over injection in anticipation of some of the fat being absorbed. Once you are in clinic we can show you photos of patients to get an idea of how it can look.