Welcome to our comprehensive video guide to fat grafting.
Fat grafting is a popular and effective cosmetic procedure. At the same time, the procedure is not as well understood as other procedures like synthetic fillers, which are also used to add volume where it has been lost. In this video series, we interview renown plastic surgeon from Vancouver, Canada, Dr. Bryce Cowan, questions about fat grafting.
Fat grafting is the transplantation of fat cells from one location of the body to another. This procedure has a long history in both reconstruction and in cosmetic realms. Cosmetically, fat grafting helps to restore volume that has been lost with age. It has an excellent safety record, and with recent advancements and refinements in technique, almost all of the grafted fat survives at the new location. This allows for more precise transplantation, transferring fat at a close to 1 to 1 ratio. Fat grafting also has other side benefits as well, improving the quality of the skin overlying the grafted fat cells.
In this video series Dr. Bryce Cowan discusses an important comparison between the use of synthetic hyaluronic acid fillers like Restylane and fat grafting. Both procedures are popular cosmetic options to address volume loss of the face, and many patients wonder about the pros and cons of these very different procedures. Both procedures have their appropriate uses. Injectable fillers are considered a “soft procedure” and is cheaper and more convenient. They start at several hundred dollars, and generally they require no downtime. On the other hand, these fillers are metabolized by the immune system over time, and generally only last several months. Fat grafts, when successfully grafted, can last a decade or more typically, and in theory, can last indefinitely. Dr. Cowan believes that younger patients who require very little filler and are using it for touch up and maintenance are likely good candidates for fillers, while older patients who may have more significant hollowing and loss of volume should consider opting for fat grafting. When larger volumes of filler are required, the costs also increase accordingly, and since they only last several months, the cost of maintenance can becomes significant. With fat grafting, the changes are far more lasting.
So, what is fat grafting?
In this first video of the series Dr. Bryce Cowan explains fat grafting – this important rejuvenating option that is used both in restorative surgery (after a trauma) and for cosmetic purposes.
Fat grafting is the transplantation of fat cells from one location of the body to another. This procedure has a long history in both reconstruction and in cosmetic realms. In cosmetics, fat grafting helps restore volume that has been lost with age.
In general, fat is lost with age, and to restore and rejuvenate, it’s necessary to add new fat cells that survive and thrive in the area where fat has been lost. In reconstruction, we know that fat grafting helps to add and restore volume where it has been lost, but as an additional benefit, it substantially improves scars, especially tight scars. The grafted fat cells also regrow collagen, improving the overlying skin quality as well.