Facial Fat Transfer
A facial fat transfer, also known as fat grafting or lipofilling, is a minimally invasive procedure that can restore volume to your face in the right places for a more youthful look. The facial fat transfer uses fat from another area of your body to plump, smooth and lift specific areas on your face.
Facial Fat Transfer Procedure Overview
A facial fat transfer uses your own body fat to restore volume to targeted areas on your face for a more youthful look. The procedure can improve sunken cheeks and hollow areas under the eyes. It is also used to smooth “marionette lines” around your nose and mouth. The fat grafting face can also plump thin lips and improve the appearance of pitted facial scars. The procedure involves harvesting fat from one area of your body and transplanting it into your face. You must have an adequate volume of fat deposits available in your abdomen, thighs, buttocks or elsewhere to undergo a facial fat transfer since the fat used for this procedure must be your own.
The facial fat transfer is completed in three stages. You will meet with Dr. Cho to discuss the area from which fat will be removed, typically your thigh or abdomen. You will be given a local anesthetic along with oral sedation, and the doctor will make a small incision in the selected area to remove the fat in a process similar to liposuction.
The fat cells are then spun in a centrifuge or filtered in order to remove any impurities. Your face is then numbed with a local anesthetic and your doctor will inject the purified fat into your face to improve your appearance. After three months the results are permanent. Since some of the fat will be reabsorbed into the body, you may need a touch up procedure to further improve the results.
Patients may complement a facial fat transfer with other upper face enhancing procedures, such as a brow lift, a facelift and eyelid surgery.
Some patients choose dermal fillers to add volume to the facial area. Juvederm, Restylane and Sculptra Aesthetic are popular dermal fillers. These dermal fillers are based on hyaluronic acid. Each is slightly different, and Dr. Cho can recommend the right dermal filler based on your needs.
A facial fat transfer is typically a low risk-procedure. However there is a potential for a hematoma, fat embolism, scarring, infections or allergic reactions.
Prior to your consultation, we want to learn as much as possible about you so that we can best prepare for your visit. We want to understand your concerns, goals, timeline, and your budget to help determine whether we have the appropriate tools and options to deliver your best results.
During your consultation, your assigned Patient Experience Coordinator and Dr. Cho will discuss your concerns in more depth. The doctor will do a physical assessment and then come up with treatment options that balance your needs to manage your downtime, your results, and how we can help address your goals. Many times, a multi-modal approach may be presented to help provide the best outcomes.
After discussing your options, you will continue your journey with your Patient Experience Coordinator to further review your quotes and review the next steps of your aesthetics plan.
What to Expect
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
For non-surgical volumizing of the face, Dr. Cho recommends Sculptra. After having used Sculptra in many patients, he has been impressed with it’s volumizing abilities through the formation of collagen. He tends to reserve fat grafting in the face for patients where he is already considering a separate surgical consideration such as eyelids or facelift.
Done properly, both fat grafting and Sculptra can be done with very natural looking results and without developing lumps or bumps.