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Facial Rejuvenation via Fat Transfer

Written by Gregory Nikolaidis, MD, Board Certified Dermatologist on November 7, 2014 4 Comments

facial fat transfer

One of the most significant factors of facial aging is the loss of volume, particularly in the chin and mid-face area, that tends to create a sunken or hollow appearance. The natural aging process causes us to lose about 10% of the fat in our face at around the age of 35 and an additional 5-10% every 5-10 years thereafter. By the age of 55 you may have experienced a 40% reduction of the fat in your face, giving a once youthful and plump face a more bony or “deflated” look.

One way to combat rapid facial volume loss due to aging is through a fat transfer (fat grafting) procedure.

Facial Fat Transfer Overview

A facial fat transfer procedure uses a patient’s own fat tissue to increase the volume in the face or other area of the body. Fat is first harvested from an area of the patient’s body using a standard liposuction procedure. Most commonly this fat is harvested from the stomach or inner thighs.  Blood and other unwanted ingredients are extracted from the harvested fat, leaving behind pure fat tissue. Finally, the fat tissue is injected into a desired area of the face to instantly add volume.

The fat transfer procedure can be used to plump almost all areas of the face including the cheeks, lips, forehead, nasolabial folds (smile wrinkles next to the mouth), and around the eyes.

Fat Transfer Results

Adding facial volume instantly creates a more youthful appearance by plumping the skin and correcting the over prominent appearance of the underlying bone structure. One benefit of utilizing the patient’s own fat to add volume is that the end result tends to have a very natural appearance.

While a portion of the fat transferred is cannibalized by the body over time the overall result of the transfer can last many years.

Fat Transfer Advantages

  • The procedure is minimally invasive and can be performed using a local anesthetic
  • Little to no recovery time is required for the transfer
  • Volume lift is instant and can last for several years
  • Provides a natural looking result
  • Fat is harvested from the patient’s “problem areas” providing double enhancement.
  • The procedure is relatively painless with no scarring.

Who is a good candidate for facial fat transfer?

If you’ve experienced moderate to severe facial volume loss, are in good health, and fall within your ideal weight range you’re a great candidate for the fat transfer procedure. In order to undergo fat transfer patients must have a sufficient amount of harvestable fat. For more information on fat transfer procedures please contact us today.


Gregory Nikolaidis, MD

Gregory A. Nikolaidis, MD is a Board Certified Dermatologist. Dr. Nikolaidis serves as a Botox® Cosmetic Black Diamond Level National Education Faculty Member, and he has additionally trained numerous physicians on Sculptra Aesthetic, Radiesse, Restylane, and other non-invasive procedure techniques. He was among the first cosmetic surgeons in the United States to offer Smartlipo laser body contouring.


4 Responses to “Facial Rejuvenation via Fat Transfer”

  1. Gerard says:

    Good Morning, I have lost fat under my cheeks due to severe cystic acne when I was younger. Today I don’t have acne but I have the sunken look in my cheeks or depression lines. I tend to puff up my cheeks and pull my cheeks back a bit and I look so much better like a new person. I’d like to inquire about this procedure and the benefits I can get from this.
    Hoping for this to change my appearance and build up my confidence too.
    Thank you

    • WD Staff WD Staff says:

      Hi Gerard, thanks for reading our post and submitting your comment! Fat transfer may be a great treatment option for the condition you describe. I will forward your email address and one of our team members will contact you.

      Thanks,
      WD Staff

  2. Jasen says:

    Thanks for sharing this article, I was considering using fillers but after reading this I’m wondering if fat will be a better option. I’ll ask my provider about it – sorry, I’m not in Texas 🙁

  3. Max says:

    Thanks for doing this post, I’m thinking about either fillers or doing fat transfer. I have hollowness around the eyes

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