Precision in Enhancement

While fat transfer has proven useful for many patients, lack of predictability in the process has made some plastic surgeons hesitant to use this treatment. However, Dr. Maas and his team have discovered a method of fat transfer that creates a more consistent and effective procedure, bringing this treatment to a brand-new level for his San Francisco patients.

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What is Fat Transfer?

Fat transfer is a process that removes unwanted fat from one area of the body and places it into another in need of enhancement. The fat is extracted via liposuction, which uses a narrow tube inserted into the treatment area to loosen fat cells and suction them out of the body. Common areas for liposuction include the abdomen, hips, thighs and back.

Liposuction may be performed under general, local or regional anesthesia, depending on the treatment area and the amount of fat to be removed.

After the fat is extracted, it is carefully harvested for injection into the recipient treatment area. Needles are strategically placed so that the fat grafted in creates a smooth, natural look. The injections usually do not require any anesthesia and downtime associated with this portion of the procedure is minimal. The primary focus after fat transfer is on recovering from the liposuction treatment.

Benefits of Mesenchymal Stem Cells

The addition of mesenchymal stem cells in fat transfer has created a procedure that is even more efficient and effective. Stem cells are undifferentiated cells that have the uncanny ability to transform themselves into any type of cell. For example, these cells can become skin cells, muscle cells or brain cells over time.

These cells also have unique regenerative properties that stimulate the body’s healing processes, making them instrumental in treating diseases and reversing the degenerative cycle of aging.

Scientists have discovered that one of the most abundant sources of stem cells is found in our own adipose tissue or fat.

The stem cells can be extracted along with the fat cells and then processed to be added to the recipient site with the fat cells used for augmentation or rejuvenation purposes. The stem cells have an additional benefit of stabilizing the fat cells so that the body reabsorbs fewer after the grafting procedure. The stabilization produces a more consistent, predictable result after fat grafting, which optimizes the patient’s results.

Treatment Options for Stem Cell Fat Transfer

Fat transfer using stem cells is an invaluable treatment that can be used for a variety of purposes:

  • Reduce fine lines and deeper facial creases
  • Restore youthful volume and definition to the facial contour
  • Add volume to breasts, either when used alone or with implants
  • Add fullness to the buttocks (known as a Brazilian butt lift)

In addition to adding natural, long-lasting fullness to the treatment area, the stem cells in the transferred fat go to work on the skin, regenerating skin cells and producing a firmer, more youthful appearance.

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Fat Transfer Before & After Gallery Harvesting Techniques

One critical factor in the success of fat grafting using stem cells is the way in which the cells are removed from the body and harvested. Gentle techniques must be employed to preserve the cells so that they can be injected into the recipient area in a healthy state. Dr. Maas utilizes an innovative technology known as Lipogems, which is a system that harvests, processes and transfers the fat cells for optimal regeneration. In clinical studies thus far, Lipogems has proven to be both safe and successful in the transfer of fat and stem cells, creating the best possible outcome for each patient.

About the Procedure

Fat transfer begins with liposuction, which is performed right in our office at The Maas Clinic™. After anesthesia has been administered, a sterile fluid is injected to make it easier to extract fat cells and minimize bleeding during and after the procedure. Next, Dr. Maas creates tiny incisions in the donor site to insert a small cannula into the adipose tissue. The cannula gently loosens the fat and stem cells and suctions them out of the body to be prepared for the injection process.

Dr. Maas then uses the Lipogems system to wash and harvest the cells, taking care not to damage them during the process. Once the cells are ready, they are placed into vials to be injected into the areas targeted for enhancement. Injections do not typically take long to complete, and you will be able to return home once this step is over.

You will likely see some mild bruising and swelling around the incisions sites where liposuction was performed, and redness around the injection locations. Side effects associated with this procedure should not last long, and most of our patients are back to their routines within about four to seven days.

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Results that Get Better Over Time

Like any injectable treatment, you will see preliminary results of your fat grafting right away. The area treated may be smoother with fewer visible lines. When fat is used for augmentation, the additional volume may be evident right away as well. However, the regenerative benefits of the stem cells have not yet begun. In the months following your procedure, you will start to notice improvements in your skin that may suggest time is actually going in reverse. You may see your skin become softer and more youthful as the cells stimulate the body’s renewal processes. The results of fat grafting using stem cells are both dramatic and long-lasting for most of our patients.

Please note that as a board-certified facial plastic surgeon, Dr. Maas only performs fat transfer procedures to the face, and not to the body. If you are ready to refresh, rejuvenate and enhance your appearance, fat grafting using stem cells might be the right process for you.

Dr. Maas is one of the few plastic surgeons in California and across the country to offer this revolutionary technique. To learn more about this treatment, contact us today.

The information about fat transfer was reviewed by Corey S. Maas MD™. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us using our contact form below.

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