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Fat Transfer Liposuction Is Not Just for Lip Augmentation

By: Dr. Ganchi

What is Fat Transfer Liposuction?

Liposuction is a brilliant cosmetic surgery procedure with a wide range of applications.  Fat transfer or lipotransfer makes use of them fat that is removed by liposuction.

Lipo means fat. During liposuction, your plastic surgeon will remove fat from one or more areas of the body. This procedure can be used for small areas such as the space beneath your chin.  It can also be used for larger areas including the thighs and buttocks.

Liposuction is also referred to as lipoplasty, suction lipectomy, or body contouring.

While liposuction alone can do wonders for the shape, fat transfer liposuction serves a dual purpose.

During a fat transfer, your cosmetic surgeon will remove fat from an area where your have excess. He will then process that fat in a special way, and  inject it in places that will benefit from a fuller and more rounded look.

The basic purpose of fat transfer with liposuction is to remove fat where it’s not needed and place it where it’s needed.

What Makes Someone a Good Candidate for Fat Transfer Liposuction?

We all know exercise and maintaining a normal weight are the best ways to improve your appearance. However, aging and genetics may, over time, make changes to your body that cannot be corrected by healthy living alone. Genetics may cause fat to be unevenly distributed. Also, by their middle thirties, most people tend to start losing volume in certain body areas, including the face, buttocks, breasts, and hands. When this happens, fat transfer liposuction may be an excellent solution.

Fat transfer candidates must be in good overall physical and emotional health.

The prospective patient must have realistic expectations about what the procedure can and can’t do for them. He or she must also have adequate fat deposits to use for the transfer.

Each situation is different. The best thing to do is come in to Ganchi Plastic Surgery where we can discuss the specific fat transfer options that interest you.  We’ll go over the pros and cons in more detail and decide what’s best for you.

Fat Transfer Liposuction for Lip Augmentation

One very well known use for this fat transfer procedure is to increase the volume of the lips.

Heredity or age can cause the lips to lose fullness, making them appear thin, frequently giving the person a more severe appearance. While chemical fillers can help this appearance, the natural way to plump the lips is with a fat transfer.

Fat transfer lip augmentation and fat trasnfer to face

Woman in her late thirties who had fat transfer to her lips for fuller lips. She also had fat transfer to her cheeks and lower eyelids to brighten her eyes and her whole face!

Facial Rejuvenation with Fat Transfer Liposuction

If you have facial creases such as crow’s feet, laugh lines, smile lines, or frown lines, your plastic surgeon can fill them with this fat injection technique. He will take excess fat from your abdomen, thighs, or another area containing excess fat and inject it into the proper target areas of your face.

Sunken areas of the face, under the eyes and cheeks can be filled in with your own purified fat. The treatment will minimize lines between your nose and mouth.

Fat Transfer Liposuction to Improve Breast Fullness and Shape

Several common reasons plastic surgeons turn to fat transfer for increasing size or improving the shape of a woman’s breasts are to:

  • Give the patient a modest increase in breast size
  • Eliminate residual breast irregularities after breast augmentation
  • Correct breast defects following lumpectomy or biopsy for breast cancer

Fat grafting is also an option for total breast reconstruction following mastectomy.  However, to achieve sufficient breast volume, this is usually a multi-stage process requiring at least two to four sequential fat grafting procedures.

Sculpting The Buttocks with Fat Transfer Liposuction

 A “Brazilian butt lift” is the traditional fat transfer with liposuction technique used to provide a more curvaceous buttock without the use of an implant. The liposuction part of the procedure also sculpts the surrounding areas to accentuate the patient’s newly acquired fullness and curves.

woman's back and buttocks before and after liposuction with fat transfer to buttocks

Liposuction of waist and back with fat transfer to buttocks. Notice dramatic improvement in shape!

Older Hands Can Benefit from Fat Transfer Liposuction

One obvious sign of aging is the loss of fat “padding” on the back of the hands. Fat transfer into your hands will add volume, and plump up wrinkled areas. This added fat will cover underlying tendons and blood vessels, and improve the quality of your skin over time.

How Is a Fat Transfer Liposuction Performed?

The amount of time it takes to perform a fat transfer with liposuction depends on the area or areas being addressed and extent of the procedure. The patient will normally either be under general anesthesia or “twilight sedation.” Twilight sedation combines a number of medications that leaves the person sleepy and numb.

The intricacies of the fat transfer procedure vary depending upon a variety of factors.  These factors include the judgment of the plastic surgeon and the areas to be addressed. However, in general, the procedure can be described in four steps.

  1. Antiseptic and a topical anesthetic are applied to the location where the fat will be removed (frequently, this is the abdomen or thighs) and the treated area where the fat will be injected.
  1. Fat cells are harvested (suctioned) from the donor site using one of several types of liposuction tools.
  2. These fat cells are purified by the doctor before they are injected into the areas to be treated.
  3. Finally, the fat cells are injected into the target area needing an increase in volume.

How Long Do the Results of Fat Transfer Liposuction Last?

It takes three to four days for the first tiny blood vessels to reach and supply the newly transplanted fat cells with the blood they need to survive.

During this time, as many as 60 percent of the transferred fat cells will die. This is why plastic surgeons will usually overfill the treated area.

More than one treatment may be required to achieve the best results. The good news is that each time the procedure is repeated, more fat accumulates in the treated area and tends to offer longer-lasting results.

What Makes Fat Transfer Liposuction So Popular?

Many people want to give their bodies a more youthful and sculpted look. Those same individuals don’t want to sacrifice a natural look. With fat transfer liposuction, the plastic surgeon can contour the body using the patient’s own fat cells.

And since a fat transfer procedure involves the person’s own fat cells, the injected material eliminates the risk of allergic reaction or rejection.

A body fat transfer also feels and looks more natural than a body implant.

What Risks Are Associated with Fat Transfer Liposuction?

As is the case with all surgeries, fat transfer liposuction carries some risks (however slight) along with the benefits. It’s important to be aware of these.

Soreness and swelling can occur in the days following the surgery.

In rare cases, a patient may experience an allergic reaction to the local anesthetic.

A small percentage of patients might experience some discoloration at the treatment site.

The transferred fat can be absorbed by the body making more treatments necessary to get the desired result.

How Do I Know if Fat Transfer Liposuction Is Right for Me?

The only way to really know if this procedure is right in your particular situation is to come into Ganchi Plastic Surgery for a consultation. We can go over your concerns, goals, and expectations and see how these can best be met.

Harvard trained, board certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Ganchi and staff lavish you with attention and make your experience enjoyable and comfortable.

WE INVITE YOU TO CALL OUR NEW JERSEY OFFICE AT 973-942-6600.


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