How Fat Transfer Can Replace Filler

Fat transfer, fat grafting, fat injections…have you heard of these terms before? They all mean the same thing and fat transfer in general is becoming overwhelming more popular every year for a number of reasons.

Fat transfer involves suctioning fat from one area of the body and transferring or injecting it to another. Fat is typically harvested from a patient’s mid-section, thigh or back. Our Utah facial plastic surgeons specialize in fat transfer to the face and have hundreds of successful patient outcomes.

Where does the fat go in the face?

Once the fat is grafted and prepared, it is then injected into areas of the face, such as under the eyes (tear troughs), cheeks, lips, nasolabial fold, marionette lines, chin, pre-jowl sulcous, jawline, mid-face and temple area(s). When fat is transferred under the eyes, it fills in hallows and can conceal dark circles. Fat and filler are both popular options for the under-eye area and can be done in-office. Filler is translucent and better for individuals who have hollows and need added volume. Fat has a yellowish color and when injected under the eyes, it can actually conceal the darkness so is often best. Fat is also typically more cost-effective since the results are permanent. But, the actual procedure is more invasive so some patients opt for filler until they are ready for something that is longer-lasting. Semi permanent and permanent fillers are not good options for the under-eye area (such as Sculptra and Bellafill) as the risk of permanent nodules (lumps) is high and difficult to treat without surgery.

Ideal candidates for this procedure have either a sunken or gaunt appearance and need volume to restore . As we age, the fat in our faces lose volume, clumps up and even shifts downward. A fat transfer is a permanent, natural way to restore your faces volume and shape.

Fat vs. Filler

As many already know, most fillers last anywhere between 6-18 months. All fat cells that attach to a blood supply through fat transfer are permanent. Yes, a fat transfer procedure does cost more up front but in the long run can actually save you money.

During the fat transfer procedure, about 2 times the amount of fat needed is added to the desired area(s) because 30-50% of the fat will not survive, meaning that it is absorbed by your body. At first, it may look like you’re overfilled but generally after 2-4 weeks, patients are very pleased with the results.

This procedure is often done in combination with facelift and/or blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery) in the operating room. If you are wanting to do 1 or 2 areas, it can be done in-office. Fat injections also improve the appearance of the skin and can really enhance one’s overall result as a stand alone or combination treatment.

To learn more or to schedule a complimentary fat transfer consultation, please call (801) 776-2220 or contact us HERE.

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