Lipotransfer- Plastic and Cosmetic Surgery

What is lipotransfer?

Lipotransfer is a process of removing fat from one part of the body and transferring it to another. Liposuction is the process of removing excess fat from the selected area of the body. Lipotransfer helps to enhance a part of body which may needs a little bit more girth. Some patients prefer this procedure to add volume to their face, breasts or buttocks.

Which Speciality to Consult?

Plastic surgeons are the people who will be generally performing the lipotransfer

The procedure:

In order to do lipotransfer (fat transfer), first liposuction is performed to collect excess fat from selected area such as abdomen, thigh, buttocks, or jowls. Body fat is located just beneath the skin on top of the muscle. A suction device is used to remove excess fat. In the beginning of the procedure, a small incision is made along the natural creases of body. Then the doctor would insert a cannula (a small-tube like device that can be rotated into forward and backward motion) to create small tunnel in the fat layer to remove fat by gentle suction.

Now from the collected fat, undamaged fat cells are isolated, cleansed, and processed. Following this, in order to inject the processed fat cells, small incisions are made on the selected area and a cannula is inserted. Fat is added slowly and carefully in multiple areas until the desired volume is achieved. The incisions are kept open or are closed with sutures. In order to prevent any fluid build-up, surgical drains may be inserted. Absorbent pads are used to protect the incision sites.

What to expect after the procedure?

Patient may be able to go home the same day after lipotransfer. Symptoms such as pain, swelling, and bruising are normal after the procedure.  In order to minimize swelling, provide support, and to help the skin adapt to the new shapes of the body, a compression garment is required to wear for few weeks. Depending on the pain levels, patients will be prescribed pain medicines.

If surgical drains were inserted during the procedure, within the first week following surgery, both surgical drains and bandages will be removed. In order to avoid any complications, patient is advised to follow proper recovery plan that include sitting and sleeping position restrictions.



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About the Author:

Dr. Anand Lakhkar is a physician scientist from India. He completed his basic medical education from India and his postgraduate training in pharmacology from the United States. He has a MS degree in pharmacology from New York Medical College, a MS degree in Cancer/Neuro Pharmacology from Georgetown University and a PhD in Pharmacology from New York Medical College where he was the recipient of the Graduate Faculty Council Award for academic and research excellence.  His research area of expertise is in pulmonary hypertension, traumatic brain injury and cardiovascular pharmacology.  He has multiple publications in international peer-reviewed journals and has presented his research at at prestigious conferences.

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