WHAT IS A FAT TRANSFER?
A fat transfer, which you will also hear referred to as fat grafting or autologous tissue transfer, is an innovative technique where the surgeon harvests fat from one area of the body using liposuction and then taking it and injecting it into another area of the body. Fat grafting can be done on men and women who want to augment an area of their body without inserting a synthetic filler or artificial implant.
WHAT IS AN ALL-NATURAL BREAST AUGMENTATION?
These days everyone wants to live an “all-natural” lifestyle, and this is also happening in the cosmetic world, with more and more patients looking for alternatives to common cosmetic procedures. Artificial implants, synthetic fillers & injectables, and other substances have been proven to get amazing results, but for these patients more interested in the natural options there are some legitimate solutions - Fat transfer procedures can be one these options.
We use a term in our office; FAME = Fat Augmented Mammary Enhancement. FAME is our way of referring to a fat grafted breast augmentation. Board-certified plastic surgeon and internationally recognized expert Dr. Nirav Salvilia is highly experienced and familiar with the various techniques and applications of fat grafting. He also has a full team dedicated to helping patients reach their aesthetic goals using procedures that align with their individual preferences.
WHEN IS A FAT TRANSFER USED IN COSMETIC SURGERY?
The list of exciting ways that fat transfer can be used for cosmetic benefit continues to grow. As stated above, fat transfer is used in breast augmentation but there are some other common procedures that can involve the fat transfer technique as well:
- Breast Augmentation: as stated above, many women use fat grafting to be injected into their breasts in lieu of getting implants, or even along with implants to customize their breast appearance.
- Breast Implant Removal: fat grafting is a great option for women who no longer want their breast implants. While it will not fully replace the volume of the implant, it can create some mass to help repair minor deformities and deficiencies.
- Facial Fat Transfer: rather than using synthetic dermal fillers & injectors, some patients use fat transfer techniques on their face to fill deep lines and restore loss of volume in the face.
- Brazilian Butt Lift: a procedure during which fat is taken from one area of the body and transferred to the buttocks to create a bigger and more shaped butt.
WHAT RESULTS CAN I EXPECT AFTER A FAT TRANSFER?
The fat transfer procedure can definitely produce nice results, but patients must have realistic expectations and understand that a fat transfer is not usually able to achieve as dramatic of a difference as the other traditional cosmetic methods.
For instance, patients wanting to dramatically increase their breast size will benefit more from having implants because there are limitations on how much fat can be extracted and then used to augment.
In doing this procedure, some of the transferred fat cells will not survive. This is a normal part of the transfer process, and Dr. Savalia knows to take this into account when planning the amount of fat he will be able to harvest and transfer.
There is a lot of importance that is put on the post-operative doctor's instructions. This is all done to maximize your chances of having the largest number of fat cells survive after the procedure. One of the most important aspects of recovery is to avoid direct pressure on the treated area. The patient will have to think about changes to their normal routines to help with not having direct pressure levied on the area, this might include sleeping on the opposite side, etc.
The results become evident more and more as the swelling from the procedure begins to subside. The final results will not be visible for many months. In most cases, it takes about six months for the newly transferred fat cells to establish a blood supply and take permanent hold in their new location.
HOW LONG DO FAT TRANSFER RESULTS LAST?
The length of time of the results from a fat transfer procedure will vary from patient to patient. We have seen that most patients will see the results for many years. One point that is important to keep in mind is avoiding any drastic weight change. This has seen to help prolong the effects of the procedure. A large amount of weight gain or loss can cause the transferred fat cells to swell or shrink, just as they do in the rest of the body. There is a chance that this will compromise your results and prompt the need for a second or subsequent procedure in the future.
Here are some points to help ensure the results of your fat transfer:
- Do not gain weight before your fat transfer
- Avoid direct pressure to the area of the newly transferred fat cells
- Maintain a stable weight
- Keep a healthy eating regimen
- Regular exercise
- Avoid any significant weight loss or gain, including pregnancy
- Adhere strictly to your surgeon’s post-operative instructions