Find out who you are and do it on purpose. – Dolly Parton
The shape of your facial or body features isn't just determined by your bone and muscle structure; it is also determined by the state of your skin and the amount of fat that exists underneath. Skin contributes to contours at the superficial level. Fat pockets are responsible at a deeper level.
That's why when you examine your facial and/or body contours and find they're lacking, consider fat grafting.
In facial and body enhancement, fat has been used for over a century by doctors to correct undesirable contours. You may wonder why. This is because your fat is bio-compatible and relatively well accepted by your body. It also creates a natural-looking and feeling improvement. Recently, liposuction has made the collection of fat even easier. Advanced techniques allow you to safely take fat from one area of your body so that it can be put into another. This technique is technically known as autologous fat transfer.
You might have too much fat in your abdomen or flanks. Wouldn't it be great if you could remove that fat to become leaner, but then use it to smooth or plump up an area that needs it?
I perform fat grafting to erase wrinkles and deep creases on your face, as well enhance the shape and size of the following areas:
- buttocks (also known as a Brazilian butt lift)
- for women, the labia in a procedure known as a "labia puff"
My vision as a plastic surgeon is to achieve the most natural, proportionate results possible. – Dr. Leila Kasrai
What will happen during your fat transfer
Local anesthesia is administered for smaller amounts of fat transfer. General anesthesia is required if higher volumes of fat are removed.
I often perform fat transfer to the face using a microfat injection technique. This doesn't require surgery and only requires the removal of fat from one area with a syringe. The fat is purified then reinjected into the select areas of your face with a tiny needle.
For other parts of your body that require more fat, tiny incisions are made in the areas where the fat will be removed with liposuction. Each of these incisions only measures a few milimetres. Through these incisions, a small cannula is inserted to first inject the area with an anesthetic solution to make the area swell. The solution also allows for the fat to be removed more easily. Once the desired amount of fat is suctioned out, the cannula is removed and the incision closed and dressed.
The fat is then purified.
The purified fat is reinjected into the desired areas of improvement. While only one session is usually necessary to do this, you may require subsequent treatments to achieve the results you want.
Recovering from your surgery
- Swelling, bruising and discomfort
- Take special care of the area where the fat was taken from and the area where it was injected
- Two to seven days off
Antibiotics and mild pain medication will be prescribed to help with your recovery.
Make sure to avoid any vigorous physical activity for a couple of weeks as you heal. This will help minimize swelling and bruising.
Any sutures will be removed within seven to 10 days. Avoid sun exposure as your scars mature. You can use makeup with sunblock to cover up any bruising.
No tell tale signs of surgery
The last thing I want is to have people point at you and say, "You've had plastic surgery done." I aim for natural-looking results, and that's what you'll get from your fat transfer. Your facial features will look rejuvenated and more proportionate, and your body will look more youthful. All without a foreign material in your body!
Frequently asked questions about fat grafting surgery
What is fat grafting?
Autologous fat grafting, or fat transfer and fat transplantation, is when you take fat from one area of your body and reinject it into another. The amount of fat removed depends on what improvement you'd like to achieve. For example, if you want to smooth away wrinkles on your face, only a small amount of fat is necessary and your treatment could be done under local anesthesia. This is specifically known as lipofilling. If you'd like to enlarge the size of your buttocks and round them out, a procedure also known as a Brazilian butt lift, then a larger amount of fat would be necessary and the procedure may require general anesthesia.
Where is the fat taken from?
Generally, fat is taken from areas of your body that have excess reserves. This is usually your mid-section or thighs. However, you can have fat taken from just about anywhere on your body where there is enough of it — except your breasts.
I don't have much fat on my body. Can I still get fat transfer?
It depends on how much fat is required to achieve your desired improvement. Even slender patients have enough fat to smooth away wrinkles or plump up their lips.
Can I get fat transfer instead of injectable fillers?
For facial rejuvenation, fat transfer can erase wrinkles, creases and fine lines, as well as enhance the shape of the lips and fill in undereye hollows. It is an alternative to hyaluronic acid-based injectable fillers that offers permanent, rather than temporary, results. One study published in Plastic Reconstructive Surgery found that autologous fat transfer is an ideal filler for the area around the mouth when performed in conjunction with a facelift.
How many treatments do I need?
The problem with fat transfer is the high rate of reabsorption. I've designed my fat grafting procedure to minimize this, applying such techniques as carefully purifying the fat before injection and over-injecting the target area. However it is still a possibility you should be aware of. For this reason, you may need repeated treatments to achieve your desired results.
Can I use someone else's fat?
No. This procedure is only designed to use your own fat. However, if you have an identical twin, it may be an option!
Can I lose weight with this technique?
The amount of fat removed will not make an impact on your weight. This is true for liposuction in general.
What is labia puffing?
Labia puffing or fluffing is a marketing term for fat transfer to the labia. It is designed to smooth out wrinkles, reduce sagging or correct asymmetry.
I've developed a number of advanced techniques and sound surgical judgment to minimize any risks related to your surgery. However, you should still know the risks:
- Hematoma and seroma
- Reactions to anesthesia
There is a higher risk in patients who have poor circulation. Make sure to not smoke in the weeks before your surgery, and as you heal afterwards.