Fat grafting may not be something you have heard of but it is a procedure I am using frequently for facial rejuvenation. We actually lose fat in out face in certain areas as we age. If you look at the pictures showing the aging process, the face thins around the eyes, cheeks and jawline. The formation of the jowls is as much a thinning of the fat in the area of the jowl as it is due to the loosening of the skin along the jawline. A youthful face is a full face – but fullness in the right places. As we age, we often gain weight in the lower part of the face like the neck but often the perceived fullness is really excess loose skin. The hollowing under the eyes which contributes to the "dark circles" seen is from fat loss. Adding the fullness with fat under the skin to the thinned areas can really make you look younger and refreshed.
The process of fat grafting, takes small amounts of fat from the thigh or belly area and transplants it very carefully into the areas of the face where the fat has been lost. The removal of the fat is not with liposuction, it is removed much more gently so the fat is not damaged. The placement is done using a very small tube under the skin which heals without a scar. This procedure has little recovery time with most of the swelling and bruising gone in approximately 10 days.
What to do after your fat grafting procedure
Healing from a fat grafting procedure is generally as easy process. You will notice the small incisions where the fat was placed as tiny scabs. It is best to not rub the areas too firmly as the scabs may become dislodged and some bleeding may occur. Swelling and bruising will likely show in the areas of the fat placement. Using ice over the areas the first day will be beneficial to control swelling. After the first day, ice will not make much difference. It is best to leave the areas where the fat was placed undisturbed. Rubbing or massaging the areas will disrupt the reforming blood supply to the fat. You may wash your face the first day and apply makeup but try to avoid rubbing the areas the fat was placed. You may feel a lump in the area also. The fat swells after placement and can feel like a lump for a few weeks until the swelling resolves. Do not worry, I have never had a permanent lump form from fat grafting.