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Fat Grafting revolutionizing Plastic Surgery, say Experts

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Fat GraftingExcess fat is a major concern for most men and women as it significantly affects physical appearance. Fat is even more problematic when it is resistant to diet and exercise. Advanced body contouring techniques such as Smartlipo Triplex laser liposuction now help resolve the issue, effectively removing the troublesome localized deposits of fat and simultaneously tightening the skin to result in a well-toned look.

Plastic surgery is also performed to enhance or replace lost volume in areas like the breasts, buttocks and face, and the standard solution is to use implants. However, with more patients seeking natural looking results, fat grafting evolved as the solution. The procedure involves using the patient’s own fat removed through liposuction to enhance areas of the body that need subtle improvement. In addition to providing a natural look and feel, augmentation using autologous tissue has also turned out as a great option to improve specific features without having to insert foreign material in the body.

At a recent meeting, top-tier surgeons of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery conceded that fat grafting is revolutionizing plastic surgery. They discussed new fat grafting techniques, their uses and combined procedures to produce natural results. A report on the discussion highlighted the views of leading surgeons on the possibilities, applications and unique features of fat transfer.

  • In addition to the breast and buttocks, fat grafting is proving useful to create more definition in earlier neglected areas such as women’s and men’s shoulders, legs, pectorals and stomach.
  • When the patient’s own tissue is used, the chances of body rejecting it are minimal, which improves the rate of success of the procedure.
  • Fat transfer treatment offers flexibility to contour the overall body shape. This is because fat can take on the physiologic component of whatever it is adjacent to, such as the bone or muscles.
  • As more people now prefer a prettier and perkier look with good shape and proportion to an increase in size, fat transfer can do a lot more than implants.
  • While implants are useful only for augmentation, fat is an ‘artistic sculpting tool’ as it can fill in defects, contour and reshape.
  • Grafting complements implants such as in composite breast augmentation, the method that is ideal when a patient wants significant augmentation or enhanced cleavage that fat or an implant alone cannot provide. Fat transfer also helps in breast lift surgery.

The surgeons also pointed out the limitations of fat grafting. Its applicability depends on various factors such as the quality of the skin, bone structure and how much the patient’s tissue can stretch. As in the case of breast implants, the volume of fat used has to suit the patient’s tissues. As with any aesthetic procedure, patient’s need to have realistic expectations about what fat grafting can achieve. The fat retention rate differs among body areas – it is an average of 40% in the breast, 60% in the buttock and 60% in the calf or legs.

When performed by a skilled and experienced surgeon, the fat grafting technique can improve overall physical appearance, and there is little doubt about the fact that it holds great promise for the future of aesthetic plastic surgery.

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