Volume loss is often the result of collagen breakdown over time. It can play a dramatic role in creating visible signs of aging. Surgical procedures, such as facelift surgery, can’t properly treat volume loss. Traditional non-surgical options, like dermal fillers, don’t yield the natural, long-lasting results most patients are looking for either. Facial fat transfer is the ideal procedure for patients who are looking to restore lost volume to create a younger, fuller appearance.
Ideal candidates for facial fat transfer are in good health and have realistic expectations about their results. To be considered for fat transfer surgery, candidates have areas of unwanted excess fat. Facial fat transfer may be right for you if you experience one or more of the following:
Facial fat transfer is performed as an outpatient procedure using either a local or general anesthetic. A gentle liposuction process harvests the fat, which is purified for transfer. Dr. Cha then grafts the fat into the tissue layers of the face to restore the volume lost. The fine needle technique used for grafting provides Dr. Cha with extra control over the grafting process for more tailored results.
It is important that people considering fat transfer have adequate areas of fat storage. Popular harvesting areas include the:
Your hands can reveal your true age just as much as your face can. Collagen loss in the hands can reveal pronounced tendons, veins, and bones. Fat transfer to the hands can restore a smooth and youthful hand appearance with the longest-lasting results possible.
Facial fat transfer can be combined with other facial procedures for patients who have facial laxity in addition to volume loss. The most commonly combined procedures are fat transfer and facelift surgery. Together, these procedures target the most common forms of aging. However, the fat transfer process can be combined with an eyelid lift or brow lift for total facial rejuvenation.
You will experience bruising and swelling in your liposuction and fat transfer treatment areas. You should rest with your head elevated for several days following your procedure. You may need to wear a compression garment depending on what area of your body underwent liposuction. Most patients return to work within a week of their procedure and can resume their regular physical activities within three weeks. Most swelling subsides by six weeks.
The results of facial fat transfer are long lasting. Unlike dermal fillers, which last between six and 12 months, fat transfer can achieve beautiful results that last for years. Most patients believe fat transfer to be a worthwhile, long-term investment since it typically erases years from their appearance.
You may develop some visible scarring at the site of your liposuction. However, incisions are generally placed in natural creases to hide their appearance. Since a fine needle is used to inject the fat into the face, most patients don’t develop scarring along the face. If you do develop scarring, it is likely to fade over time.