Thursday, September 1, 2011

Facing Fat Facts

Whether it's your own fat, synthetic fillers, or both for your facial rejuvenation goals, the same adage applies: One size does not fit all

Despite the aesthetic industry’s evolving attitude toward fat as functional facial filler over the past several years—from cynical to skeptical to accepting—Dr. Few has been fat grafting for more than 12 years. Today, no doubt about it, fat is fabulous. (Who’d have predicted that?)

Fat, says Dr. Few, may be uniquely “green” (a great way to recycle that unwanted collection from the waistline, no doubt), and offer a nice, long-term facial result, but, he points out, it isn’t a filler that completely transcends the overall filler category. In other words, just as certain synthetic fillers are indicated for specific components of facial rejuvenation, (ie, hyaluronic acids are used to fill lines, plump lips, put the apple back in your cheek), fat too has it’s strengths. Unfortunately, that doesn’t include filling fine lines.

“Fat is only good for volume, not superficial wrinkles,” says Dr. Few, a fact he often points out to counter the misconception among his filler patients.

While fat is routinely used for cheeks, chin and jawline, if you’ve got fine lines to fill, those are best left to the HA fillers (Restylane, JuvĂ©derm, Perlane). In Dr. Few's hands, it's Restylane. And if fat just isn't your thing (or if you simply don't have the tissue to spare—ahem, nice problem to have!), Dr. Few says you can opt for Restylane all the way.

Side by side, here's generally how fat and Restylane stack up (all that's left is to decide is, which one is right for you?):

Fat vs Restylane

Procedure Time, min









$1500 (2 syringes)

up to 18 months

*75% patients won’t need another filler for several years; 25% patients will need another round of fat in 3 to 12 months.

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