About Fat Transfer

As one grows older, the effects of gravity, sun exposure, and the general everyday stresses of life begin to affect the overall appearance of one’s face resulting laugh lines, smile lines, crow’s feet or facial creases over the areas where facial muscle movement occurs.*

Injectable fillers such fat transfer can help fill in these lines and creases, and temporarily restore a smoother, more youthful appearance. When injected beneath the skin, these fillers plump up creased and sunken areas of the face. In addition, they can add fullness to the lips and cheeks.*

It is important to realize that fat transfer is not permanent. It can, however, slow it down and “set the clock back” for those desiring a temporary, more youthful appearance.*

Are You a Candidate for Fat Transfer?

At initial consultation for fat transfer in San Francisco, Dr. Javaheri will evaluate the skin, the muscles and the underlying bone structure of your face, and discuss your goals for the procedure.

*Individual results will vary in each patient.

Dr. Javaheri will ask you about your general medical history, specifically pertaining to any medical conditions that could cause problems during or after your surgery, such as drug allergies, active skin infections or non-healed sores from injuries.

About the Procedure

The fat transfer procedure is known as autologous fat transplantation or microlipoinjection. It involves extracting fat cells from the patient’s abdomen, thighs, buttocks or elsewhere and reinjecting them beneath the skin of the face. Fat is usually used to fill in cheeks or laugh lines between the nose and mouth, to improve skin depressions or indentations, to minimize forehead wrinkles and to enhance lips.*

After both the donor and recipient sites are cleansed and treated with a local anesthesia, the fat is withdrawn using a syringe with a large-bore needle or a cannula, which is attached to a suction device. The withdrawn fat is prepared and injected into the recipient site with a needle. Sometimes an adhesive bandage is applied over the injection site.

It is necessary to overfill the recipient site allow for fat absorption in the weeks following your treatment. When fat is used to fill sunken cheeks or to correct areas on the face other than lines, this overcorrection of newly injected fat may temporarily make the face appear abnormally puffy or swollen.*

The fat transfer procedure is usually administered at one of Dr. Javaheri’s office locations in San Francisco. However, if you are being hospitalized for a facelift, necklift, browlift, or any other procedure, your injections may be administered in the hospital as well. Dr.Javaheri will determine at the time of your consultation if this will be appropriate for you.*

What to expect after the surgery 

You may be advised to curtail your activity for a short period time. However, many patients are able to resume normal activity shortly post treatment. You can expect some swelling, bruising or redness in both the donor and recipient sites. The severity of these symptoms depends upon the size and location of the treated area. You should stay out of the sun until the redness and bruising subsides, which usually takes approximately forty-eight hours. During this time, you may apply makeup with sunblock protection to help conceal your condition.*

The swelling and puffiness in the recipient sites may last several weeks, especially if a large area was filled.*

The duration of the fat injections varies significantly from patient to patient. Though some patients have reported results lasting over a year, the majority of patients find that some of the injected fullness disappears within three to six months after their last procedure. Therefore, repeated injections may be necessary. Dr. Javaheri will advise you on how to maintain your results with repeat treatments.*

Possible complications

Since the fat is harvested from a patient’s own body, there is very minimal risk of an allergic reaction. However, as with all procedures, there is a small risk of infection and other rare complications.*

*Results for each patient will vary. Please remember that the information provided will not guarantee your eligibility for fat transfer. Consultation and medical examination must be completed before approval for a fat transfer procedure in our San Francisco office.