Fat Transfer

Transplanted fat has been used for years to restore youthful facial proportions, enhance features, augment curves and correct deformities, and because fat is rich in stem cells and growth factors, it, can improve the quality of the overlying skin.
 
Transplanting your own fat eliminates the potential complications seen with dermal fillers such as allergies and reactions to foreign materials, and the results sometimes last up to ten years or more. Especially for people who require multiple syringes of dermal fillers to achieve their desired results, fat grafting can be a less expensive option, with potentially longer lasting results.
Stem cells released from the transferred fat have the potential to become new fat, muscle and bone cells, which are the exact tissues that shrink in the aging face to cause overall volume loss. 
 
 

What's involved in a fat transfer treatment? 

People interested in having a fat grafting treatment need to have a consultation (complimentary) to discuss the procedure with Dr. Elliott and determine if it's their best treatment option. Smokers, patients on anticoagulants (blood thinners), people with poorly controlled medical problems, weights that fluctuate up and down more than 10 lbs, or who have body dysmorphic disorder, are not eligible for the treatment. 

The fat is most often obtained from the abdomen or flanks, and because only a small amount is obtained, not enough is withdrawn to provide body contouring.

On the day of the treatment, Dr. Elliott gently injects anesthetic and then painlessly removes some fat with only mild suction. The fat is washed and then meticulously injected into the treatment areas. 

The area from where the fat was harvested is usually minimally tender for a few days after the procedure. Facial bruising and swelling can vary from none to moderate, varying of course among individuals. Most people can return to social and work activities within about three days after a fat transfer.

What are potential problems or complications with fat transfer?

Every patient reacts differently and the results of fat transfers are less predictable than with dermal fillers. A general rule is that the amount of improvement that's still present three months after the treatment will likely last up to ten years, but it's possible no improvement will remain by three months. People interested in fat transfer treatments must accept that they may need to repeat the treatment to get to their desired result.

Like any procedure utilizing injections, expected side effects can include bleeding and bruising at the harvesting or injecting sites. Rarely, depressions at the site where the fat is harvested may result. Post-treatment infections are also rare but a potentially serious complication. As with dermal fillers, over-correction and under-correction at the site where the fat was transferred can occur. 

Why do I not recommend fat transfers for everyone interested in volume replacement?

The duration of volumizing results from a fat transfer are more unpredictable than the results seen with dermal fillers, so if a patient doesn't need a lot of volume replacement, they may be happier with dermal fillers.  Some people maintain the volume that the fat restored for over ten years and some people lose all of their improvement in less than three months. It's impossible to predict who will get the best results with fat grafting, so patients not willing to do a touch-up fat transfer procedure if needed, should probably choose a different treatment option.. 

Nanofat treatments are another regenerative treatment using the growth factors and stem cells obtained from fat but not the fat cells, so it isn't a treatment option for those seeking volume replacement.

Fat grafting fees start at $850 and are based on the type of treatment and the size of the area.

Call our office at 727-571-1923 today or click here to make an appointment for a complimentary initial consultation, to learn if a fat treatment is your best option.

  • Nanofat contains stem cells to help aging, crepey skin look younger, but has minimal downtime.

  • Before and after dermal fillers and fat transfer