A fat transfer procedure – also commonly referred to as fat injections, fat grafting or autologous fat transfer – utilizes a patient’s own body fat collected via liposuction, purifies that substance, and then injects the fat back into designated areas for cosmetic enhancement. This treatment is designed to add volume and improve contours in various areas of the body, including the face, breasts, and buttocks. Customized fat transfer procedures can provide many patients with smooth, natural-looking, and long-lasting results that address a variety of common aesthetic concerns.
- Fat Injection Benefits
- Facial Fat Transfer
- Breast Augmentation with Fat Grafting
- Fat Transfer vs. Injectables
- Fat Transfer Recovery
- Fat Transfer Cost
What Are the Benefits of Fat Injections?
The versatility of fat injections makes it a dynamic option for many patients looking to achieve a wide range of cosmetic goals. Benefits offered by fat injections can include:
- Addressing aesthetic concerns in the face, breasts, and buttocks
- Replenishing volume in fat-depleted areas
- Smoothing contours for shape or irregularities
- Filling in depressed scars
- Reducing signs of age
- Reducing excess fat where the liposuction component of the procedure is performed (usually the hips, abdomen, or thighs)
- Replacing the need for implants or other types of cosmetic injections
This rejuvenating and restorative treatment can be applied almost anywhere in the body. During your consultation with our board-certified plastic surgeon, Dana Coberly, MD, you’ll discuss the different options available for your specific goals and explore whether this treatment is ideal for your needs.
Facial Fat Transfer
Facial fat transfer procedures can improve signs of aging that diminish volume and deplete what was once a more youthful, refreshed aesthetic. The natural aging process may lead to sunken or hollow cheeks, thinner lips, and deep wrinkles or creases. By injecting fat into targeted facial areas, this technique can produce softer contours and smoother skin texture while augmenting the cheeks, lips, or under-eye hollows. Fat transfer treatments can also be ideal for filling in “marionette” lines, nasolabial folds, and other facial wrinkles with effects that can last much longer than other dermal fillers.
Breast Augmentation with Fat Grafting
For patients who would like fuller breasts but may not need breast implants to achieve their goals, a breast augmentation with fat grafting (fat transfer) could be an option. Also referred to as a “natural” breast augmentation, this procedure is best for enhancing volume – with only a very conservative increase in size – to achieve a soft, subtle, natural-looking result. It’s important to note that, for a noticeable breast size enhancement, there will most likely need to be several fat injection sessions performed over staged appointments.
Patients who would like a more significant size increase may be better suited to a full breast augmentation. With that in mind, breast augmentation with fat grafting can also be advantageous for balancing out asymmetrical breasts or enhancing a traditional breast augmentation by smoothing the edges of the implants.
Fat Transfer vs. Cosmetic Injectables
Common facial cosmetic concerns such as wrinkles, folds, creases, lines, and volume loss can often be improved by either a fat transfer procedure or cosmetic injectables, depending on your preference. There are several differences to consider:
- Uses the patient’s own natural volume of fat
- Requires outpatient surgery (which includes liposuction) with general anesthesia
- Results typically last much longer than dermal fillers
- Patient receives the double-benefit of excess fat reduction in one area of the body followed by rejuvenation of another
- Many injectables use hyaluronic acid or muscle- / wrinkle-relaxing botulinum toxin components to rejuvenate signs of facial aging or stress
- Non-surgical alternative without any downtime
- Temporary results that last an average of four to eighteen months depending on the solution utilized
In certain cases, individuals may be ineligible for surgery or they would like more temporary results, so cosmetic injectables will likely be preferable. Dr. Coberly carefully reviews each option for every patient so they may make the best decision for their treatment plan.
What Can I Expect During Recovery from Fat Transfer?
Patients may experience bruising, swelling, and discomfort at the treatment areas immediately following surgery, but these symptoms should subside within one week. It is common for patients to take one to two weeks off work to let the incisions at the extraction and transfer sites fully heal. Our surgeon will provide post-procedure care instructions and will ultimately be able to advise on a timeline to resume normal activities and routines, typically based on progress monitoring at follow-up appointments.
How Much Does Fat Transfer Cost?
The cost of fat transfer procedures often vary greatly since the treatment is customized and is capable of addressing an array of cosmetic concerns for each patient’s unique needs. Dr. Coberly will perform a comprehensive evaluation of your treatment goals, determine whether you are a good candidate, and create an individualized plan. The price of this treatment will be based on a number of factors, including:
- The location(s) and volume of fat to be harvested
- Areas for which the fat will be transferred (face, body, or breasts)
- Number of anticipated sessions for the desired outcome
- Anesthesiology/surgeon/facility fees
- Follow-up care
The experienced staff at Coberly Plastic Surgery & Med Spa will be able to review your estimated price quote once the treatment plan has been designed. We will be happy to talk with you about the convenient payment options available at our practice, including plastic surgery financing arrangements that offer qualified applicants a way to bring this procedure into their budget by setting up a monthly installment plan.
If you have additional questions about fat transfer treatments, or if you are ready to schedule a consultation with Dr. Coberly, please contact us today.