Exercise and maintaining a normal weight are the best ways to improve your appearance, but aging and genetics may negate the positive effects of healthy living and may cause fat to be unevenly distributed. Also, beginning in their late-30s, people tend to start losing volume in specific body areas, including the face.
Fat injections can be an effective way to reduce wrinkles, diminish acne scarring and regain a more youthful appearance.
Fat transfer is a natural, minimally invasive alternative to facial cosmetic surgery.
Fat injections are best used to fill in bags under the eyes, fill out the cheeks and chin areas to lift facial structure, or as an all purpose filler in the face. Fat transfers can also be used for hand rejuvenation, hip enhancement and breast reconstruction.
Fat injection is a good option if you:
- Are desiring large volume enhancements and/or require deep tissue injection.
- Are physically healthy.
- Have mild or moderate degree of facial aging.
- Have specific, but realistic, goals in mind for the improvement of your appearance.
- Lab testing or a medical evaluation
- Taking certain medications or adjusting your current medications
- Stopping smoking well in advance of surgery
- Avoiding aspirin, anti-inflammatory drugs and herbal supplements due to increased risk of bleeding.
Fat injection procedures are generally performed on an outpatient basis using local anesthesia. The procedure usually takes 1-3 hours, depending on the patient, the volume to be injected, and additional procedures that are being completed at the same time.
The fat is withdrawn from certain areas of the body (typically the abdomen or hips), either by using a needle or through techniques similar to those used during liposuction using a special suction cannula). Once enough fat is taken from the donor area, it is then purified through the use of a centrifuge, which spins the fat and removes impurities.
The fat is then injected into areas needing augmentation through an injection needle that is usually passed in and out of the specific areas multiple times.
- Rest with your head elevated on 2 pillows.
- Swelling, bruising and tightness of the treated areas is to be expected.
- Use a cold compress (crushed ice in a zip lock bag), gently placed over treated areas to minimize swelling and bruising.
- Try to minimize movement of the treated sites.
- Take your antibiotic and other medication as directed.
- DO NOT TAKE vitamin E, Aspirin or aspirin-like products including Ibuprofen.
- Advil, Nuprin, Aleve, or Motrin for 3 weeks before and one week after surgery.
Typically, after fat injection, there is minimal discomfort in the donor area from where fat is removed. Discoloration and swelling of the injected portions of the face area will generally improve over 4-5 days. Patients are usually able to return to work and social activities after one week. When more extensive fat grafting is performed recovery may be longer.
During recovery, you should avoid sun exposure and may wear makeup with UV protection to disguise and protect the effects of the procedure.
You will see immediate results from your fat injection, and the treated areas may appear too augmented at first due to swelling.
Over time, the swelling will subside, and you will usually be able to see your true results in three to four months.
Fat injections are longer lasting than most other injectable fillers (such as Juvederm, Restylane, Perlane, and Radiesse). Because fat is a natural substance, there is typically less reaction to the injected fat by the body. Injected fat has the potential to survive for many years in the new location. Survival of fat is greater in areas where there is limited movement (cheeks, back of hands) and tends to be less in areas where there is constant movement (lips and mouth). In the lip and mouth areas fat does absorb over time and repeated injections may be necessary to maintain desired fullness.
- Only local anaesthetic is necessary
- No allergic risks involved, long-lasting or permanent results
- Natural-looking results
- More economical than synthetic fillers in the long-term
- Not only does the Fat Graft result in increased volume and ‘plumpness’, but also improved skin texture and quality due to the stem cells contained in the fat
- Non-surgical office procedure using your own unwanted natural body fat
Dr. Varasteh Kia with enough proficiency can help you get the best and long-lasting results in fat injection.