Most people look at fat as "the enemy", but fat can be used to your advangtage when harvested and reinjected in the face. Fat can be taken from a place where there is excess and then transfered to the same areas of the face where Dermal fillers are used. The idea of using one's own fat has been around for years, but just recently, new techniques have been developed to improve the long term outcome (longevity) of using fat in facial grafting.
There are many advantages of using your own fat as a facial filler. For most people, there is plenty of fat available in other areas of the body as donor sites. The fat cells are living cells, and since they are your own, there are no rejection issues. Unlike Dermal fillers, when your own fat is injected into your face there is a completely natural feel to it; it is soft and supple. Many surgeons feel that fat contains abundant stem cells which serve to assist in rejuvenation and provide a natural sheen to the appearance of the skin.
Facial Fat Grafting can be used to:
- Fill in areas of temporal hollowness
- Diminish nasolabial folds, laugh lines and wrinkles
- Increase lip size
- Fill in depressions such as the pre-jowl sulcus and tear trough
- Increase cheek size and contour
The procedure for facial fat grafting is relatively simple and is performed in our office under Intravenous Sedation. The fat is gently harvested from the abdoman, "love" handles or inner thigh, and then the fat is allowed to separate from the liquid by the natural force of gravity. It is then placed into small injection syringes and, using a blunt cannula, injected into the face to correct specific problems. Using a blunt cannula to inject the fat vs. using a sharp needle allows for very minimal bruising and swelling compared to Dermal fillers.
I prefer to inject the fat in an atraumatic fashion using a "layered" or topographical map approach. When the fat is injected in this way, there is a greater chance that these fat cells will survive and become part of the body's natural tissue. Some of these fat cells can be expected to resorb by the body over time. Although some patients may get a permanent result with a single injection, sometimes a second or third fat grafting session is needed to obtain a permanent result. We include a "touch-up" session approximately 3 months following the initial session if needed.
For more information about facial fat grafting check out https://www.drmorrissette.com