Facial wrinkles and creases are part of the aging process. They begin to appear as the underlying collagen and elastin fibers break down and wear out. While this breakdown is part of the natural aging process, it can also result from excessive squinting, frowning and smiling.
Fat transfer, also called autologous fat transplantation or micro-lipoinjection, is performed by plastic surgeon, Dr. Thomas Pane in Palm Beach Florida to plump up facial features with a patient’s own fat. It is a popular alternative to other wrinkle treatments. Fat transfer to the face is a safe, natural, non-allergenic procedure designed to recontour your face and can provide definition to your cheeks and chin. It can also be used to correct facial deformities. Since fat transfer uses your own fat cells, you can never have an allergic reaction, because it’s from your own body.
With fat transfer it is possible to have fat liposuctioned from your thighs and then transferred to any area of your body. Reinjected fat lasts longer in larger areas of non-movement, so it is very successful for the correction of sunken cheeks because this area does not move as often. Fat transfer can also correct atrophic aging of the hands and post-surgical and post-traumatic defects. Although fat transfer to the breasts was previously avoided, new research has shown this tobe safe and an effective way to enlarge the breasts in patients with the correct anatomy who do not wish to use breast implants. Patients with breast implants can also receive fat grafting to enhance their results or to enhance the soft-tissue volume and fullness of the breasts.
How is the fat transfer procedure done?
Fat transfer is performed in our office on an outpatient basis. Both the area from which the fat is taken and the treatment site are anesthetized with a local anesthetic. Using a small needle attached to a syringe, fat is removed from a donor site where your fat is most tightly packed, such as your abdomen or your buttocks.
Once removed, your fat is processed to remove excess fluids and then reinjected using another needle, which is placed just under your skin beneath the wrinkle. This process may be repeated until the desired correction has been achieved.
What are the benefits of fat transfer?
- Fat transferred to the face can last as long as three years.
- Fat transfer can be very cost effective when combined with another procedure.
- There’s no chance of an allergic reaction.
What can I expect after my fat transfer?
After our physician performs a fat transfer, patients are up and around immediately. Any discomfort following the procedure can be controlled with medication. Some swelling at the treatment site may last up to 36 hours. There may be some bruising, which can be covered with make-up. Your initial injection should last up to 6 months. For results that will last years, patients usually receive 3 – 4 treatments over a 6 month period.