Fat Grafting Houston
Fat Transfer or Fat Grafting is a process where fatty tissue is removed from one area of the body, purified, and placed in another area of the body to enhance or give volume where needed. How the procedure is performed and the results possible depend upon the area to be enhanced and the amount of fat needed to get the result you desire.
Fatty tissue is composed of living cells- cells that need nourishment to survive. The key to getting a good result in fat transfer is to maximize the ability of the fatty cells to survive the transfer process and receive nourishment in their new locale before they “starve”. Houston Plastic Surgeon Dr. Lee Steely is an expert in maintaining viable fatty cells as well as placing fat grafts for great results. Using gentle harvesting, washing, and placement techniques, Dr. Steely has been able to achieve remarkable results that potentially last a lifetime.
The Fat Grafting Process
Fat grafting should be thought of as a surgical procedure. Some smaller graft placements can be performed under local anesthesia, while larger grafting procedures require sedation by an anesthesiologist. After your consultation with Houston plastic and cosmetic surgeon Dr Lee Steely, a detailed plan will be formulated for your fat grafting procedure. Fat grafting is often accompanied by other procedures such as liposuction and breast and face procedures to give a proportionate look.
For smaller fat grafting procedures, local anesthesia accompanied with oral medication is used for comfort. Dr. Steely begins with numbing the areas where fat is harvested as well as where fat will be deposited. A slender cannula is used to harvest that fat. The fat is then separated and processed to give the highest possible fat graft “take”. The fat is then carefully placed in the site to be enhanced with another slender cannula that allows placement of minute amounts of fat at each pass- further enhancing the ability of fat to survive. Recovery is quick and you may return to work after a day or so, and strenuous activity after a couple of weeks.
Initially there will be swelling from the procedure, but after a few days you should begin to see your results. Not all of the fat survives, but what remains after several weeks will likely be there to stay.
Fat Preservation, Storage, and “Bio-Insurance”
Steely Plastic Surgery is offering an exciting new technology that will allow you to store fat harvested during liposuction for use in the distant future. In conjunction with cell biologists and stem cell researchers at AdiCyte (www.adicyte.com) we are now able to store your fat in a “suspended animation” state- allowing use of your more youthful tissues years or even decades in the future. This stored fat can be used as facial fillers, breast fillers, or body fillers. In addition, specialized stem cells found in our fat tissue may hold the key to an entire new world of regernerative medicine where in the future these cells may be used to generate new tissues for you to use as you may need due to aging, trauma, or disease. Find out more at the Adicyte Website.
Fat Transfer and Fat Grafting FAQ
What Areas of the Body can be Fat Grafted?
Using your body’s own fat is a tremendous advantage in that essentially anywhere on the body can be a potential site for fat grafting. Face, buttocks, hands, breasts can all be considered great sites for volume enhancement with your own fat.
What Happens to the Fat that Doesn’t Survive?
Some of the fat does not survive the transfer process. The amount is variable depending upon the amount transferred and the site being enhanced, but fat that does not survive is reabsorbed by the body and eliminated.
Can I Have Fat Transfer instead of a Breast Implant for my Breast Augmentation?
Fat transfer has been used in the breast for everything from small contour defects to more generalized augmentations. It is Dr. Steely’s opinion that a fat transfer into the breasts for enough volume to mimic a breast implant of any but the smallest size yields an unacceptable result in shape and feel. Dr. Steely reserves fat transfer to the breasts to correct contour deformities to achieve symmetry.
Do I have to Go To Sleep for Fat Grafting or Harvesting?
Depending upon the site to be grafted and the amount of tissue needed to be harvested, many fat harvesting and fat grafting procedures can be performed under local anesthesia.
Call 713-622-6500 or email Dr. Steely for a complimentary initial appointment or for more information relating to the fat transfer/grafting procedure.