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Fat Transfer

1) What exactly is a Fat transfer?

Fat transfer is a cosmetic medical procedure (also known as ‘Fat Grafting’, ‘Lipo Filling’, and ‘Lipostructure’) that involves the removal of fat from areas of excess (abdomen/thigh) via liposuction. Removed fat is prepared, then fat and stem cells are re-injected to attenuate certain wrinkles (nasolabial fold), as well as to rejuvenate and enhance all areas of the face. This includes the lips, cheeks around the eyes, chin, nose, neck, jawline, marionette lines, brow, upper eyelids, temples, correcting hollows and defects.

Fat transfer can also be used for breast and buttock enlargements, as well as other areas of the lower body. Fat transfer allows 100% natural rejuvenation of face and breasts and since the fat cells belong to the same patient, there is no chance of rejection.


2) Am I a good candidate for fat transfer?

Some of the indications that the patient may be a good candidate for fat transfer are:

  • Restore the volumes and shapes of the face
  • Reduce facial scarring
  • Lip enlargement
  • Removing or attenuate fine lines and wrinkles
  • Restore hollows in the temples, under the eyes circles, and in the cheeks
  • Smoothening bridge of the nose after Rhinoplasty.
  • Reduce deep nasolabial folds
  • Correct irregularities after a liposuction
  • Enhanced flat buttocks
  • Repairing muscles resulting from nerve injury or trauma
  • Rejuvenate thin, bony, or aged hands
  • Improve body contour
  • Full breast enhancement and rejuvenation
  • Moderate breast reconstruction (Augmentation) or correction

3) Do the patient qualify for fat transfer surgery?

Fat transfer surgery can be performed on individuals typically above 20 years of age, who feel the need to improve the overall appearance of their face or body.

The ideal candidate for fat transfer surgery is someone who is in good physical and mental health. Smokers are encouraged to quit at least a couple of weeks before the procedure and it is also recommended to not drink alcohol before and after surgery. This promotes proper healing and aids in avoiding complications during the procedure.

Dr. Zacharia will explain what can be done to assist eligible candidates for this procedure. He will discuss the steps of the proposed surgery and the variables that may affect the procedure.


4) How much does fat transfer cost?

The cost of fat transfer surgery varies to each individual, as well as the complexity of the procedure performed. The cost will be based on specific fees for the professional, anaesthetic, hospital, and if applicable, charges for an overnight stay.

Any surgery performed for purely aesthetic reasons will not be covered by health insurance. In cases where the procedure is considered medically necessary, such as corrections of birth defects or damage due to trauma, the procedure may be covered. It is recommended that patients discuss what will be covered by their insurers prior to booking the procedure.

Book a consultation, request a quote online, or contact the staff at Dr. Zacharia’s rooms today on (02) 9192 1600.


5) How do I prepare for fat transfer surgery?

At the consultation, Dr. Zacharia will discuss the procedure, risks and limitations, costs involved, patient expectations and goals, as well as the recovery process. He will also conduct a medical examination and help the patient prepare both physically and mentally for fat transfer surgery.

Dr. Zacharia will then provide a checklist surgery information package that explains everything a patient should do and know before their fat transfer surgery date.


6) What to Know About Anaesthesia.

Fat transfer is usually carried out under local anaesthesia, with minimal down time. General anaesthesia can also be used in some cases. Dr. Zacharia and his anaesthetist will assist patients in making the decision regarding which type of anaesthesia is best for their individual procedure.


7) About the Procedure:

Most fat transfer surgeries take 30 mins to two hours, and then the patient may be discharged in the same day, or may require an overnight stay. This depends on which areas of the body the surgery is performed on.

The procedure is minimally invasive, making it very appealing. During the surgery, Dr. Zacharia removes fat from either the abdomen or buttocks, using special suctioning instruments designed to remove fat without damaging the cells. The fat is then concentrated and is carefully re-injected into the areas chosen.

A fat transfer procedure is divided into three parts: –

  • Fat harvesting – similar to a liposuction
  • Preparation of fat cells – the collected fat is filtered and washed to purify it, with the removal of any blood or excess oil
  • Injection of the autologous fat cells – injected with very fine cannulas in the areas requiring filling or rejuvenation

Unlike other fill methods, 60 to 70% of the injected fat remains as a permanent improvement. Another advantage of fat transfer is that the body does not reject it because it is the patient’s own fat. However, there is a rate of absorption, a percentage of the transferred fat that does not survive.


8) What to expect after surgery?

After the patient’s fat transfer procedure, the patient may need a ride home. The recovery procedure from fat transfer is not as long as with a complete liposuction procedure, but the patient may experience some swelling and discomfort. If this is the case, Dr. Zacharia may prescribe medication to help the patient manage pain. As the patient heals and swelling dissipates, the patient will gradually begin to see the full results of their fat transfer treatment.


9) What are the risks and complications involved in Fat transfer surgery?

No surgery is risk free. As with all procedures, there are number of risks and complications. Understanding the risks is imperative and Dr. Zacharia discusses these openly with prospective patients in the initial consultation.

The chance that any of these complications may occur during the surgery or during recovery is usually very small. The following is a list the most common risks that may occur, such as being swollen and bruised to various degrees, for a few weeks, as well as tiredness, infection, etc.

During the initial consultation, Dr. Zacharia will answer any questions and make sure the patient fully understands all possible complications involved with the surgery.


10) How long is the recovery time after surgery?

Following the procedure, the patient can expect to be swollen, a bit bruised and a little sore both at the treatment site. The patient shouldn’t wear makeup until at least one-two days after. If a patient is offered any type of sedative, they will need someone to drive them home.

It is also recommended to avoid high-impact exercise or activities for the first two-to-three weeks, depending upon the extent of the surgery.


11) How long will I be off work/school?

This depends on which areas of the body the surgery is performed, but at least one week is recommended. As swelling and bruises appear during the 48 hours following the surgery, these should be reabsorbed in five to 15 days.


12) Will I have visible scars after Fat transfer surgery?

Anytime that the skin is cut, a scar is formed. Incision healing is dependent on several factors, including surgical technique, prevention of infection, reduction of tension, patient nutrition, as well as smoking (before or after surgery), etc.

Dr. Zacharia will make every effort to make the scars as inconspicuous as possible.

The incision for fat transfer is so small, that it is not a major concern to the patients.


13) When will I see the final results?

The final result can be observed within three-to-six months after the surgery.

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