Fat grafting involves taking fat from one part of the body via liposuction and transferring that fat to another part of the body. This is truly the essence of plastic surgery because we are contouring and shaping the body much like a sculptor. The patient gets the benefit of liposuction and the benefit in the area that is fat grafted. The liposuction is usually performed on the abdomen, flanks, outer thighs, or wherever the patient doesn't like their excess fat. The recovery is similar to liposuction although specific procedures may have different post operative instructions. There are many parts of the body that can benefit from fat grafting:
Aging hands can be treated with fat grafting by adding volume to the back of the hands, plumping up wrinkled areas and covering veins and tendons while improving the quality of your skin over time. It is also common to use IPL laser at the same time as the operation to get rid of brown pigment and sunspots that make your hands appear older.
As we age we lose volume in our face, especially in the cheek bones. Injectable fillers are now commonly used for this but need to be repeated, usually on an annual basis. In our practice we feel that fillers remain the gold standard for most patients because they provide more structure and are more effective at softening nasolabial folds, and fine wrinkles around the lips and marionette lines. However, fat grafting is an excellent volumizer if placed properly and the results are permanent.
The brazilian butt-lift has become one of the most popular procedures in America, but the butt lift isn't a lift at all - its really fat grafting. Liposuction of the back and flanks is performed shaping the top of your buttock and then the fat from the liposuction is injected into the buttock to give it more shape and volume. The combination of the liposuction and the fat grafting give a curvaceous outline to the torso emphasizing that classic hourglass shape.
Fat grafting can be used to fill defects or divots following lumpectomy or can be used in addition to traditional breast reconstruction techniques to shape and contour the breast.
Reconstruction after Radiation:
Radiation often damages the soft tissue causing deformities. Fat grafting can help smoothen out these deformities and improve the quality of the overlying skin.