Smoothing out the wrinkles
Facial wrinkles and creases are part of the aging process. They begin to appear as the underlying collagen and elastin fibers break down and wear out. While this breakdown is part of the natural aging process, it can also result from excessive squinting, frowning and smiling.
Injectable fillers and fat cells taken from your own body are the two most frequently used methods for filling facial wrinkles and frown lines.
While injectible fillers can smooth out wrinkles, they aren’t for everyone. Some patients are allergic to bovine collagen or may develop an allergic reaction over time. If you are considering filler injections to correct the early signs of aging, you may need to have a simple skin test prior to your treatment.
Fat transfer, also called autologous fat transplantation or micro-lipoinjection, plumps up facial features with a patient’s own fat and is a popular alternative to other wrinkle treatments. Fat transfer to the face is a safe, natural, non-allergenic procedure designed to recontour your face and can provide definition to your cheeks and chin. It can also be used to correct facial deformities. Since fat transfer uses your own fat cells, you can never have an allergic reaction, because it’s from your own body.
With fat transfer it is possible to have fat liposuctioned from your thighs and then transferred to any area of your body. Reinjected fat lasts longer in larger areas of non-movement, so it is very successful for the correction of sunken cheeks because this area does not move as often. Fat transfer can also correct atrophic aging of the hands and post-surgical and post-traumatic defects. But not every area of the body responds well to fat transfer. The breasts for instance, are out. Injecting fat into the breast makes it much more difficult to detect breast cancer with mammograms.
How is the procedure done?
Once removed, your fat is processed to remove excess fluids and then reinjected using another needle, which is placed just under your skin beneath the wrinkle. This process may be repeated until the desired correction has been achieved.
Harvesting the fat cells for reinjection is often performed in conjunction with other procedures, such as liposuction, tummy tuck or cosmetic breast surgery. When fat is harvested during another procedure, it is often possible for your surgeon to harvest a larger amount of fat, then freeze and store your fat for future injections when they become necessary.
What are the benefits of Fat Transfer?
Fat transfer can be very cost effective when combined with another procedure.
There’s no chance of an allergic reaction.
What can I expect after my fat transfer?
Patients are up and around immediately following fat injections. Any discomfort following the procedure can be controlled with medication. Some swelling at the treatment site may last up to 36 hours. There may be some bruising, which can be covered with make-up. Your initial injection should last up to six months. For results that will last years, patients usually receive three or four treatments over a six month period.