Dermal Fillers or Facial Fat Grafting: Which is Right for You?

Dermal fillers have become a popular cosmetic treatment options, with the ability to smooth away wrinkles while restoring facial volume lost during the aging process. Now, a new procedure is giving dermal fillers a run for their money, with similar results that are much longer lasting. Facial fat grafting, also known as autologous fat transfer, is a procedure that removes fat from one area of the body and transfers those cells to the face via injection. Is fat grafting a better option than dermal fillers? The answer to that question may depend on a myriad of variables.

Injectable Treatments

Facial fat grafting and dermal fillers both fall into the category of injectable cosmetic treatments. In the case of dermal fillers, a synthetic solution is injected to support the underlying skin structure and smooth away fine lines and deeper creases from the inside out. Facial fat grafting uses the patient’s own harvested fat cells to eliminate wrinkles and restore volume to areas like the cheeks and jawline.

Invasiveness of Procedure

Dermal fillers consist strictly of injections, using a very fine needle or micro cannula to administer the formula. The procedure typically takes just a few minutes to complete, depending on the size and number of the treatment areas. There are few side effects associated with dermal fillers and no downtime after the procedure.

Fat grafting involves an initial liposuction procedure to remove excess fat from one area of the body to be prepared for transfer. Liposuction is more invasive than injectable treatments, involving local or general anesthesia and a few days of recovery time afterward. Liposuction requires small incisions to insert a narrow cannula that breaks down fat and gently suctions it out of the body.

Predictability and Duration of Results

It is difficult to predict the success of a fat grafting procedure until after it is completed. When successful, fat grafting results may last for a very long period of time, even a lifetime for some patients. When the procedure is not successful, fat cells may break down within 2-3 months and the patient will have to have a second procedure to achieve desired results.

Dermal fillers tend to offer fairly consistent results with every patient and procedure. Most dermal fillers last up to six months, although some formulas can last up to one year for most patients. The procedure will need to be repeated periodically to maintain positive results.

The choice between fat grafting and dermal fillers is one that should be made between a patient and cosmetic surgeon. Dr. Christopher Kovanda has had ample experience in both procedures and will help you choose the best treatment based on your unique concerns and desired results. To learn more about these treatments, contact Kovanda Plastic Surgery at 855-337-4367.

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