The Surgeon Minute

Fat Transfer, “It’s God’s Miracle to Plastic Surgery!”

Fat Transfer, “It’s God’s Miracle to Plastic Surgery!”

Fat transfer is a revolutionary concept growing exponentially in plastic surgery. An often described “magical” concept, the procedure transfers fat from areas where there is too much and places it where there is too little. This safe, long-lasting, well-tolerated procedure produces natural-looking results, whether it be involved in facial procedures, body contouring and/or buttock augmentation.

Board certified plastic surgeon Dr. James Namnoum of Atlanta truly believes in fat transfer procedures, dubbing the technique, “God’s Miracle to Plastic Surgery.”

Where Fat Transfer can be Useful

Fat transfer is a great solution across many plastic surgery procedures, aimed specifically at volume loss do to aging. In the face, this issue is corrected with fillers that provide great volume at the cost of a temporary solution. Fat transfer might be employed to achieve sustained revolumization, as well as depositing potential stem cells from fat tissue and helping boost circulation. Body contouring, buttock augmentation, and even hand rejuvenation see massive gains with fat transfer.

Fat transfer overview.

When to consider fat transfer:

  • Facial volume loss
  • A desire for a more permanent and natural solution than fillers
  • Body contouring – taking volume from areas and adding it to others to reshape
  • Add nuance and micro enhancements to breast augmentation and reconstruction procedures.

“Now my practice is all about fat grafting!” says Namnoum. “So virtually every procedure that I do removes fat removal from one part of the body, where it’s unwanted, and transferring it to some part of the body where it’s useful.”

What Exactly is “Fat”?

Fat is a funny thing. For decades, it has been in and out of normal conversation as the ultimate aesthetic enemy, a dangerous macronutrient, now a very positive and necessary macronutriet, and, even more recently, the magical substance that surgeons can move around at will. Not only can it be transferred, but even more recently fat has shown to include stem cells that may impart a rebirth of cellular rejuvenative activity at the injection site. This aspect of fat transfer is still in it’s infancy, but surgeons and researchers are noting the possibilities as procedures continue.
“Without a doubt, one of the most exciting developments in plastic surgery is fat grafting,” continues Namnoum. “Fat! What is fat? It’s a component. It’s mature fat cells. It’s stem cells. It’s inflammatory cells. It’s all these and more that can be combined into this incredible milieu that can be used for volumization – restoring the volume to a certain area. It’s natural tissue. It’s rejuvenation because the stem cells can be reactivated in specific situations to make enhanced blood vessels, to enhance the quality of skin.”

How is a Fat Transfer Procedure Performed?

To harvest fat, surgeons employ liposuction at an area where there is too much. If only a small amount of fat is required – and the main procedure being performed is also small enough to not require general anesthesia – then the surgeon will anesthetize the region locally and remove the fat with liposuction. Potentially this could all be done in the office for small injections like in the face and hands, but usually fat transfer is done in an operating room as part of larger procedures like breast augmentation, buttock augmentation, and body contouring. After removal, the fat is washed and purified, and then carefully reinjected with specially designed canullas into the areas that need enhancement.

Fat transfer - buttocks.

The Best, Natural Way to Volumize

“Fat confers a sense of health and well being and naturalness,” shares Namnoun. “And what we’re seeking to do in the modern plastic surgery world is to create natural solution. A solution that looks rejuvenated and healthy. We can’t get that by simply taking things away. We have to add things back in and they can’t just be plastic balls of silicone. They have to be soft, natural appearing tissue so the patient looks natural. Which is the stated goal of most patients.”

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