Q: Why are fat grafts an important option in facial rejuvenation?
A: As we age the superficial layers of the skin become thin and a loss of collagen makes the skin loose elasticity. The face may appear deflated as a result of facial fat atrophy. Gravity may also contribute to the formation of folds and wrinkles. The treatment goals of facial rejuvenation are directed toward reversing this process. This is accomplished by injecting fat which acts as a scaffold to lift and fill areas of the face that are deficient in fat and have lost three dimensional youthful contours. Fat grafting is performed in conjunction with facelifting, cosmetic eyelid surgery, and laser skin resurfacing.
Q: Where does Doctor Kopelman obtain the fat?
A: To restore the lost volume Dr. Kopelman obtains fat from another part of your body, usually from the abdominal area, hips, or inner thighs. He then relocates the fat to facial areas that are deficient in fat usually to cheeks, lips, temples, jawlines and lower eyelids.
Q:How does fat grafting compare to other facial fillers?
A: Because your own fat is biocompatible it has a distinct advantage to artificial fillers because it won’t be “rejected” by your body. Your own fat also has the potential to last the longer than artificial facial fillers and there is some evidence that stem cells contained in fat may have positive rejuvenating effects on the overlying skin.
Q:What are some disadvantages of fat grafting?
A: Fat grafts require a minor surgical procedure (limited liposuction) to obtain the fat, and therefore it is not as readily available as “off-the-shelf” synthetic hyaluronic acid gel facial fillers like Juvederm or Restylane. Grafted fat also retains the characteristics of the donor site fat (belly fat) therefore the transplanted fat can expand or contract if a person gains or loses body weight.This is particularly of concern in younger people who have hormonal fluctuations in their body weight. However, the main limitation of using fat is the unpredictable reabsorption of fat after it is grafted.Despite these reservations fat grafting does have a place in selective facial volume enhancement particularly for people who do not choose to have artificial fillers to augment their facial soft tissue volume.
Interested in learning more about the benefits of facial fat grafting?
Contact Ms. Anne Lembersky our patient care coordinator at201-444-4499to arrange for an in-depth consultation to discover how fat augmentation can rejuvenate the appearance of your face.