Restore lost volume with fat transfer surgery.
Using your own fat to replace lost facial volume is an excellent way to restore a more youthful look. Early signs of aging are often caused by loss of soft tissue, leading to flattened cheeks, hollow areas around the temples, and lines and indentations around the mouth. Experienced, skilled plastic surgeons who understand this evolving technique can take years off of your appearance through autologous fat grafting, also called fat transfer.
Las Vegas residents interested in fat transfer for facial rejuvenation can request a consultation with one of our plastic surgeons specializing in facial procedures. Or call our office at 702-822-2100 to schedule an appointment.
IS FAT TRANSFER RIGHT FOR ME?
Plastic surgeons now know that some of the most noticeable signs of facial aging are caused by the loss of volume, including thinning skin, fat, soft tissue and bone. Injectable fillers are the most popular treatments for restoring volume and a youthful appearance, but your own fat can be used as a natural filler, either by itself or combined with other procedures. However, not all the transferred fat will survive. Determining whether you’re a good candidate for fat injections is something you and your surgeon will discuss at your consultation. Good candidates for fat transfer treatments:
- Have enough fat in a donor site, such as the abdomen, thighs, or flanks
- Are concerned that they look older than they should due to volume loss in the face
- Have realistic expectations about the procedure
- Be at a stable weight
We often recommend fat transfer as an adjunct to other surgical rejuvenation procedures, such as a facelift, brow lift, and eyelid surgery.
HOW IS A FAT TRANSFER IS PERFORMED?
Fat transfer combines body contouring with facial rejuvenation. Treatments involve 3 steps: extracting fat from a donor area using liposuction; processing the fat to separate the adipose fat tissue from fluids and contaminants; and injecting healthy fat into the recipient area.
WHAT CAN I EXPECT DURING RECOVERY?
Although our surgeons offers you a specific recuperation timeline during your consultation, most of our Las Vegas area fat transfer patients have relatively comfortable and uneventful periods of recovery. We recommend a stay of 10-14 days for our out-of-town patients and will can help make arrangements.
For the first few days after your surgery, you can manage any discomfort with prescribed or over-the-counter pain relievers. Swelling and bruising are usually maximum at 3 days and improve over the next few weeks. Most people feel well enough to work at 2 weeks, but still have cosmetic signs such as swelling and bruising that they would rather others not see.
During the recovery period, you will need to keep your head elevated in order to minimize swelling. Many patients opt to sleep in a recliner or propped up on a wedge or pillows. You will be encouraged to walk but must avoid heavy exercising to avoid delayed bruising and bleeding for 2-3 weeks. Sun protection is vital, especially for bruised skin and pink scars. To help yourself heal, don’t smoke and avoid secondhand smoke.
During your recovery, a bandage could gently be placed around your face and neck to minimize swelling and bruising when your procedure is completed.
A thin tube may be present to drain any excess blood or fluid that may collect under the skin.
You will be given specific instructions that may include how to care for the surgical site and drains, medications to apply or take orally to aid healing and reduce the potential for infection, specific concerns to look for at the surgical site or in your general health and when to follow up with your plastic surgeon.
It is important to keep your head elevated above your heart to minimize swelling and to keep your head straight without excessive twisting or bending of your neck. We also advise not to apply to the neck as this can compromise blood flow and result in skin death.
“Fat transfer for facial rejuvenation is well-established. But the science of fat transfer continues to evolve. The amount of fat that ‘takes’ is still variable in the best of hands. In order for fat to ‘take,’ the fat cells have to become incorporated into the surrounding tissue with a blood supply to nourish them. One of the reasons fat works well as volume replacement is stem cells. Fat is the most abundant and accessible source of stem cells. These are specialized cells that have the ability to morph into a variety of cell lines. This probably explains why the skin or scars of some patients who have had fat injections actually look better years later.”
– Dr. Goesel Anson