Fat Transfer

Fat transfer or fat grafting uses fat from one part of your body to enhance or fill out another part of the body.  Fat can be used to plump your lips and cheeks, to fill wrinkles, and to correct hallowing.

Since the fat grows into the area of correction, the results are permanent. Recent studies have also shown that injecting fat underneath the skin may actually improve the quality of the skin.

What to Expect from a Fat Transfer Procedure

Fat transfer procedures can be done under local anesthesia or with anesthesia.  Fat transfer is done by collecting the fat using liposuction, separating it from the liposuction fluid, and then injecting it into the desired area.

Recovery from Fat Transfer

You will have swelling and you may have redness or bruising in the area where the fat was placed and in the area where it was taken. This generally resolves quickly. You can resume normal activities the same day for small areas or within a few days if large areas are grafted.

Risks of Fat Transfer

There are risks of bleeding and infection with any surgery, but there are unique risks with fat injection that are related to fat necrosis and fat take.

What Does "Fat Take Mean?"

About half of the fat will “take,” meaning that it will grown its own blood supply and become a permanent part of your body in the new area. 

Once this happens, the fat will respond like any other fat in the body. When you gain weight, the area will get larger and when you lose weight, the area will get smaller.  Depending on the amount of take and the amount of change you desire, it is sometimes necessary to repeat the transfer, especially for larger areas.

When the fat does not survive, most of the time your body absorbs it safely.  But, sometimes it stays in the tissues and develops into either cysts or firm lumps.  These may go away over time, but occasionally they need to be surgically removed.  Since calcified lumps or cysts in the breasts can be confused with cancer, I do not offer fat injection into the breasts.

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