Support Your Surgical Results With Fat Grafting

When most of us imagine the process of aging, we think of lines and wrinkles, maybe creases and loose, inelastic skin. Perhaps the image of sunken eyes or hollow cheeks also emerges, but not for everyone. Yet, it is the loss of volume from key areas of the face like these that can truly reveal one’s age, even after all the wrinkles have been reversed. As we age, the natural fat pads of the face shift downward, collecting around the chin and jaw to create jowls for many of us. While surgery can correct many of the problems that result from aging, most cannot restore volume without the help of fat grafting. Learn more about this anti-aging treatment and what it can offer to facial surgery patients.

What Is Fat Grafting?

A fat grafting procedure involves the transfer of the patient’s own fat cells from one part of the body to another, in order to restore volume to where it has been lost. The process begins with the harvesting of fat cells from a donor area, typically the abdomen, thighs or buttocks. The fat cells are then processed and purified before they can be injected into the treatment area. The most common places fat grafting is used include the hands, chin, cheeks, lips, frown lines between the eyebrows, crow’s feet, nasolabial folds between the nose and mouth, and areas with scarring. In all of these areas, fat grafting will smooth away lines and wrinkles, restoring the natural contour of the face.

What Surgeries Can Benefit From Fat Grafting?

While fat grafting may seem like a simple procedure, the impact it can have on your overall look can be quite dramatic. For this reason, many plastic surgeons offer their patients a combined procedure, where fat grafting is used to support the final results of another facial surgery. Fat grafting can add volume where it is missing, while other surgeries are focused on removing excess fat and skin, tightening muscles and tissues, or just reshaping parts of the face. For the right patients, fat grafting can take surgical results to the next level.

The following procedures can easily be paired with fat grafting treatments and may create the impressive results you’re hoping for:

  • A brow lift focuses on lifting the eyebrows and forehead, smoothing away deep creases and frown lines. Some patients may experience depleted volume in the forehead, which can make the horizontal creases deeper and harder to diminish. Adding fat grafting treatments can recreate the lost fat padding in this area for a more refreshed look.
  • Chin augmentation surgery adds volume and better definition to the chin and the entire profile as a result. There are various methods of performing chin enhancements, including fat grafting or a combination procedure that might involve and implant along with fat grafting.
  • Facelift surgery rejuvenates the lower portion of the face by excising loose skin, removing fat deposits, and tightening the underlying tissue. The jaw and chin are both refined through this process. Many surgeons recommend fat grafting to fill in the areas where volume has been lost, such as the cheek bones.
  • Rhinoplasty is a nasal surgery that can alter the appearance of the nose while improving or preserving nasal function. Patients with pointy noses can benefit from the added volume of fat grafting, which might round out the tip of the nose. Fat grafting can also be used to clean up lines and wrinkles around the nose and mouth in order to rejuvenate a patient’s entire look.

When Is a Good Time for Fat Grafting Treatments?

Whether you’re looking to add them onto a surgical procedure or receive them as a separate treatment, fat grafting can be done on your own schedule. A local anesthetic will be used to numb the donor and receiver areas and mild sedation is sometimes used, if necessary. The procedure itself doesn’t last a long time. Once the donor fat cells have been suctioned out through a cannula, they can be cleansed and placed into a syringe. Your initial fat grafting results can be seen almost immediately, as the fat cells settle into the new area and begin integrating with the surrounding tissue.

One benefit of the fat grafting procedure is the very minimal recovery time involved. Many patients experience slight swelling, redness, and bruising around the donor site and treatment area, but these are short-term side effects that will disappear gradually. You won’t be required to have any downtime, but you may find it beneficial to get some rest and let your body begin the healing process. Follow your plastic surgeon’s advice for your short recovery and after-care to ensure everything goes smoothly.

Are There Other Benefits to Fat Grafting Procedures?

Fat grafting offers many benefits to patients, some of which have already been mentioned. While it is simple to perform, takes very little time, and doesn’t require a lengthy recovery process, the fat grafting procedure can still provide terrific anti-aging results by restoring lost volume and smoothing wrinkles. Additionally, there is no need for general anesthesia, which can eliminate certain risks from the procedure.

While many synthetic injectable treatments can carry some risk of an allergic reaction, fat grafting is wholly unique in this respect too. Because the fat cells are harvested from the patient’s body and reused elsewhere in the same body, there is no risk of reacting to or rejecting the fat cells. It really doesn’t get any more natural than redistributing your body’s own assets to a place where they are more needed.

The results you will experience from fat grafting are another big benefit. Many patients are pleasantly surprised with their natural-looking, more youthful appearance. Except for the actual injection site, which heals completely in just a few short days, there are no obvious signs that a procedure has been performed. The fat cells will adapt to their new environment quickly, moving and feeling just like the surrounding tissue. They will also last much longer than artificial alternatives, because the body will treat them as its own cells, which they are of course.

Where Can I Get Fat Grafting Treatments?

Consult with a plastic surgeon experienced in fat grafting treatments and other facial surgeries to get your very best results. Frederick G. Weniger, M.D., F.A.C.S. provides his patients with years of experience and knowledge during one-on-one consultations regarding the surgeries and nonsurgical treatments available at their practice. Dr. Weniger is board certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery and a member of The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. He believes good information lies at the heart of success in all of his surgeries and interactions with his patients.

To schedule a consultation for any aesthetic service or other procedures, contact the office of Weniger Plastic Surgery today at (843) 757-0123. They are located at 350 Fording Island Road, Suite 200, in Bluffton, South Carolina.