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Fat Grafting - Non Surgical Procedure

Nov 7, 2007
As we age, our facial tissue tends to deteriorate, resulting in the descent and thinning of the face. Fat grafting is a procedure utilizing the body's own tissue, eliminating the chances of rejection, to reintroduce fat to specific areas.

When combined with a liposuction procedure, fat that has been removed can be reused to define other areas of the face and body. It may take more than one procedure to get the best result.

Facial fat grafting has been in existence for many years, and is effective for filling in deep facial lines, nasolabial folds, and sunken eyes. Surgeons perform fat grafting on many facelift patients to address both major causes of facial aging: sagging (gravity) and deflation (picture a deflated balloon).

The sagging is corrected by the facelift, and the fat that has been lost with age is replaced to create the most natural and realistically youthful look possible.

Facial Reshaping is a revolutionary technique in cosmetic surgery which can effectively correct: Thin or gaunt face, underneath the eyes, long face, bottom-heavy or jowly face, chubby face, midface retrution or flatness, and asymmetrical face.

The procedure uses minimally invasive methods and requires minimal downtime. Your own fat is extracted and then specially processed in the operating room before it is injected deep within the structures of the face to accentuate the cheekbones, midface, lips, cheeks, chin, nose, temples and jawline to reshape the face. Fat in certain areas will be permanent, though on some people it may need to be repeated.

By using this minimally invasive technique, the patient's face can be reshaped without the prolonged downtime associated with more invasive techniques. In fact, facial reshaping has been used along with rhinoplasty and other facial procedures to create better results by shaping the face to match the nose.

Many early signs of aging, such as fat shifting, fat descent or fat loss can be corrected with fat injections, which can actually delay certain aging anatomical processes. This procedure requires a thorough understanding of beauty and the anatomy of faces of all ages in order to prevent the signs of aging and create the proper proportions.

It has been discovered that liposuctioned fat is rich with stem cells. These are the undifferentiated cells that when placed in contact with the other organs will actually create or repair those organs. We have seen for years that fat (which contains stem cells) injected into the face has corrected problems with skin pigmentation, wrinkles, loss of facial volume secondary to decrease in bony size, and other aging effects.

Therefore, patients who have facial reshaping get a double benefit; a better-shaped face and stem cells which help correct skin and other conditions.

The most apparent side effect is excessive swelling which can last for about two weeks following surgery. Also, some bruising can appear. The most often occurring complications of fat grafting include overcorrection (too much fat injected), under correction (the desired results are not achieved), clumping of the graft, infection, scarring in the donor area or bleeding.

It is essential to follow the instructions from Dr Peterson as the period after surgery is very important. There are some limitations that you have to be aware of after the operation: avoid aspirin and ibuprofen about two weeks after the surgery; also, stop smoking about 3-4 weeks before and after the procedure. Avoid massage or excessive facial movement because this can impede the relocation of the fat. To minimize irritation, ice compresses are recommended. Consultations with your surgeon are also very important during the recovery period.

It is not known how long the graft lasts. During the first several months, the body absorbs about 65% of the fat. The rest 35% usually remains in the same place. To have longer lasting results, patients can obtain three or four treatments over a period of six months or one year.

Although allergic reaction is not a factor, there is minimal risk of infection.

Injections can be combined with liposuction. Instead of discarding extra fat, it can be used to plump other areas of the body.

There is minor discomfort associated with some bruising, swelling and redness in both the donor and recipient site which should dissipate in a few short days.

The typical recovery period for this procedure is short, with most patients returning to normal activity immediately. Makeup may also be applied as normal.
About the Author
Dave Stringham is the President of LookingYourBest.com an online resource for plastic surgery in Hawaii. Learn more about breast augmentation and non-surgical procedures.
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