Autologous Fat Transfer
Autologous Fat Transfer
Body fat makes excellent soft tissue filler substance. AFT transfers fat from one part of the body to another to re-contour the face or to augment certain areas (breast or buttocks) or to fill out depressed / scarred areas on any part of the body. It can also be used to rejuvenate ageing skin and to revitalize skin.
In general, age or sex is not a limiting factor for AFT.
You may be a good candidate for AFT if you desire to:
- Correct those prominent frown lines, crow’s feet and nasolabial folds (smile lines) – especially static lines.
- Provide definition to cheeks and chin.
- Correct aged, thinned and hollowed facial and hand skin
- Fill out any depressed area of the body
- Augment breasts or buttocks
- Penile Enlargement
How is the AFT performed ?
The procedure is performed in an operation theater, under suitable anaesthesia (local, intra-venous sedation, regional or general anaesthesia).
The procedure involves three principle steps:
- Harvesting of fat – Liposuction from abdomen, back or thighs is commonly done to collect fat. This may be done using Syringe liposuction techniques or by using Water-jet assisted liposuction (WAL).
- Processing of fat – IN the traditional method the fat is allowed to sediment and then centrifuged to separate the unwanted components such as fluid, blood and oil. This extensive handling of fat may reduce the fat survival rates. With WAL, which is a state of the art machine the fat is collected in a gentle manner and the unwanted components are separated without requiring to needlessly handle the fat or exposing the fat to air. This method has now been established as the best technique for harvesting fat so as to have maximum fat survival rates.
- Transfer of fat – The fat is then injected into the target areas using cannula. Fat is injected as smll droplets and in multiple planes (levels) so as to ensure greater survival rates.
The procedure generally lasts for one to two hours.
You may have a small dressing at the donor site.
AFT has excellent results but may produce significant swelling that may take 7 to 14 days to settle. Bruising usually fades quickly and can be camouflaged by 7 days. Most people can return to work by 5 – 7 days. Oral medications will be prescribed to keep you comfortable.
Fat survival rates are unpredictable all over the world. You will therefore be informed that you may require subsequent sittings of fat transfer to achieve your desired result.
The results of AFT can be a natural, permanent improvement in the shape of your face, cheek bone, eyebrows, lips or hands.
Advantages with AFT
- Outpatient procedure that generally takes under an hour
- Little or no downtime
- Minimal discomfort, which can be controlled with medication
- The fat cannot be rejected
- Cost effective if combined with another procedure, such as liposuction
AFT is a surgical procedure and has some potential problems associated with it. You will be asked to sign consent forms to ensure that you fully understand the procedure and any risks and potential complications.
Some of the potential risks associated are:
- Anaesthesia related risks
- Swelling, bruises
- Death of fat cells (Necrosis) leading to under-correction
- Cyst formation
- Migration of fat
- Need for multiple sittings for large volume enhancements (esp. breast or buttocks)
- Under-correction – may require touch-up procedure
- Face – inadvertent injection into artery may cause blindness, stroke or skin necrosis
During consultation be prepared to discuss:
- Your surgical goals
- Medical conditions, drug allergies, and medical treatments
- Current medications, vitamins, herbal supplements, alcohol, tobacco, and drug use
- Previous surgeries
Your aesthetic surgeon will also:
- Evaluate your general health status and any pre-existing health conditions or risk factors
- Examine and measure target area
- Take clinical photographs
- Discuss your surgery options and other options for achieving your goal
- Recommend a course of treatment
- Discuss likely outcomes of and any risks or potential complications
It’s very important to understand all aspects of your procedure. It’s natural to feel some anxiety, whether it’s excitement for your anticipated new look or a bit of preoperative stress. Don’t be shy about discussing these feelings with your cosmetic surgeon.
Preparing for AFT
In preparing for surgery, you may be instructed as follows:
- Get lab testing or a medical evaluation. You will be asked to get a mammogram done to rule out any pathological lesion in breasts.
- Take certain medications or adjust your current medications
- Stop smoking
- Avoid taking aspirin, anti-inflammatory drugs, and herbal supplements as they can increase bleeding