What Is Fat Transfer Plastic Surgery?

Fat transfer is a minimally-invasive surgical procedure during which a person’s own fat is harvested though needles, or cannulas, then purified outside the body and re-injected into areas that need more volume. In essence, fat is taken from wherever it is unwanted and transferred to wherever it is wanted.

Are Fat Transfer Procedures Popular?

Very. Just in the last ten years, many advances have been made in the harvesting, purification and injection techniques. Many plastic surgical training programs have begun to incorporate fat transfer into their curricula, and it is routinely discussed at national and international plastic surgical

(3) What are the different kinds of fat transfer procedures? How are they performed?

Fat transfer procedures may be categorized as cosmetic procedures and reconstructive procedures. Cosmetic purposes primarily include facial rejuvenation (cheek augmentation, lip augmentation, lower eyelid treatment, nasal contouring, wrinkle/crease filling, acne scar treatment) and buttock augmentation; reconstructive purposes include filling of post-cancer defects, treatment of radiation damage and scar revision to name a few.

They are all performed using sterile technique in an operating room, and they all include various methods for (1) fat harvesting that is similar to liposuction, (2) fat purification using centrifuges, strainers and/or wicks, and (3) fat injection using syringes and specialized needles or cannulas. The fat must then be painstakingly placed in tiny particles throughout the surrounding tissues in a latticework, or honeycomb pattern, so that they take on blood supply and become part of the body once again.

(4) What types of fat transfer procedures do you perform?

Facial rejuvenation, buttock augmentation, filling of breast cancer defects and scar revision.

(5) What are the pros and cons of these different fat transfer surgeries?

Pros: Permanent, natural, safe, minimally-invasive, affordable.

Cons: Variable results depending upon surgeon and patient.

(6) What are the side effects of fat transfer surgeries?

 One side effect is favorable: stem cell activity. Fat is rich in stem cells, and current research is attempting to understand how fat transfer procedures may maximize their utility.  Many patients describe improvements in skin tone, clarity, texture and pore density above areas of fat transfer, which may possibly be due to stem cell differentiation into skin cells. Negative side effects can include oil cysts, fat necrosis or granulomas.

(7) How are fat transfer considerations different from other plastic surgery procedures?

First, the results may be unpredictable. They are highly dependent upon the surgical technique and the surgeon’s experience, but also the patient’s own fat and blood supply. Second, the results change significantly over time. Most studies show that 50-70% of injected fat cells survive, which means that up to half of the immediate result may be lost. This leads most surgeons to “over-correct” during the procedure, knowing that the final outcome will be less. Finally, it is a permanent solution, unlike fillers such as Restylane or Juvéderm that fade away after a year. Some patients use temporary fillers to test their appearance before committing to fat transfer.

(8) What is the future of fat transfer plastic surgery?

One of the most exciting and controversial applications for fat transfer is in cosmetic breast augmentation. Many women (and surgeons) are thrilled by the idea of taking fat from the belly, or the hips and using it to enlarge the breasts. These techniques are being developed and refined, but many questions about long-term safety and the effect on breast cancer screening will need to be answered before this becomes mainstream. Also, more breakthroughs in the delivery of stem cells through fat transfer will likely be seen soon.

(9) What is the average cost of a fat transfer procedure?

Fat transfer may be done under local or general anesthesia, depending upon the extent of the procedure and the areas of treatment. Minor facial rejuvenation typically costs around $2000, major facial rejuvenation costs around $5000, and buttock augmentation costs around $10,000.

About The Surgeon

Dr. Jeffrey Donaldson is a board-certified plastic surgeon with a specialization in fat transfer procedures. He has performed thousands of successful surgeries throughout his 20+ years at his practice and continues to help patients everywhere understand the necessary details about this popular cosmetic solution. 

With fat transfer, Columbus, Ohio plastic surgeon, Dr. Jeffrey Donaldson, improves youthful volume in the face. Used as an additional therapy to a facelift surgery or used alone, fat transfer uses ones own fat to plump the tissue of aging areas of the face.

Columbus, OH, July 20, 2010 (Vocus) — According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, soft tissue fillers increased 7% from 2008 to 2009 where botulinum toxin type A usage decreased 4%. This data simply reinforces the message that Dr. Jeffrey Donaldson has been telling all of his patients, “volume in the face is the latest treatment of aging.”

Reports Dr. Donaldson, a plastic surgeon in Columbus, Ohio, “Fat transfer or fat grafting is one of the latest techniques to restoring volume to the face, to achieve a youthful, natural facial appearance.”

Recently seen on Fox 28 on July 15, 2010, Dr. Donaldson discusses a combination therapy of fat transfer with eyelid surgery and facelift. “You can’t just pull it tight, and hope that it looks ok. We really need to fill these areas and contour them with a natural soft look.”

Dr. Donaldson comments, “Historically, the steps for a plastic surgeon to take in treating an aging face was to lift, tighten, stretch and smooth the skin, but now we know that this just redrapes the skin over the same thinning, underlying tissue.”

The new approach is to rejuvenate the face completely by restoring tissue volume where it has faded or decreased with age. This may include fat grafts with or without the addition of hyaluronic acid filler such as Restylane and Juvéderm. A combination of treatments is evaluated on a per-patient basis with the goal of filling the deeper tissues which results in the skin being pushed out and wrinkles smooth more naturally.

But unlike hyaluronic acid fillers whose effects fade with time, fat transfer only has to be done once for permanent results. After the surgeon removes the fat from the body and purifies it, and injects it to an area of the face, the fat will survive where injected and provide lasting effects through stem cell activity. Dr. Donaldson reports that it is quite common to see many patients with ongoing improvements in skin tone, pore size and overall appearance for several years following the procedure.

“It’s a small amount of fat … it’s small enhancements that tend to take on the blood supply of the surrounding tissue so you can have a nice, soft appearance. So the risks, inevitably, a little bit of bruising, some swelling, but after a week or two it fades out nicely,” comments Dr. Donaldson.

Not only is fat transfer ideal for smoothing wrinkles, it also smoothes deep acne scars, damage from radiation and skin grafts. Unlike fillers, fat transfer only has to be done once for has permanent results.

About Dr. Jeffrey Donaldson:

In private practice in Columbus, Ohio, Dr. Jeffrey Donaldson is a fellowship-trained surgeon with subspecialty-fellowship training with some of the most influential leaders in the plastic surgery field. He teaches medical students, and resident surgeons and serves as a media expert on a variety of plastic surgery topics. In 2010, Dr. Donaldson was honored with a Patients’ Choice recognition.

For Columbus, Ohio, breast augmentation, plastic surgeon Dr. Jeffrey Donaldson offers an innovative procedure that delivers implants through small incisions under the armpit, providing patients with natural results that do not leave scars on the breasts.

Columbus, OH, September 01, 2010 (PR.com) — Breast augmentation surgery continues to be the number one cosmetic surgical procedure chosen by women around the country. While most women are thrilled with the size of their new breasts, some are not pleased with the scars that remain on their chest after traditional breast augmentation. Columbus, OH, plastic surgeon, Dr. Jeffrey Donaldson provides women with a less invasive, “scarless” option that eliminates this common concern.

Formally known as transaxillary endoscopic breast augmentation in Columbus, Ohio, it is performed through small incisions in the armpit using specialized technology. In a recent interview, Dr. Donaldson stated “surgeons traditionally cut around the nipple or near the lower breast fold – but both create visible scars on the breast.” According to further comments by Dr. Donaldson on Columbus NBC4i, the new procedure is different because “these scars are really well hidden, high up into the armpit on both sides.” The new breast augmentation option is sometimes called “scarless” because the location of the small incision makes them virtually invisible when a patient’s arms are not raised. Women have no scars on their breasts after the procedure.

When asked about the operation, Dr. Donaldson explained, “The procedure begins with a small incision about one-half of an inch wide. The implants are deflated and inserted into their positions under the muscle. Then, once the implants are in place, they are filled with saline and the wounds are closed.”

The benefit for patients is two-fold. First, the lack of visible scarring makes their surgery virtually undetectable. Second, the results are immediate and appear quite natural. One of Dr. Donaldson’s patients actually confused her primary care physician when she described her recent operation to him, after he had confirmed a “normal” breast exam!

When asked about an ideal candidate for surgery, Dr. Donaldson said, “The surgery is not perfect for all women who want a larger breast size. The ideal candidate is young and wants a natural-looking breast.”

Aside from the avoidance of visible scars, there are other benefits for women who choose the minimally invasive, or “scarless” breast augmentation surgery: the recovery time is usually brief, and the cost is comparable to more traditional methods. Five to seven days of mild post-operative swelling and bruising is common, but most patients return to work within a week. As of 2010, the procedure costs around $5,000.

Contact Dr. Donaldson to schedule a personal consultation for Columbus, OH, breast augmentation via his website:www.donaldsonplasticsurgery.com, call 614-442-7610.

About Dr. Donaldson

Dr. Jeffrey Donaldson is a solo, private practice plastic surgeon who specializes in cosmetic and reconstructive procedures of the breast, body and face. He is fellowship-trained, teaches students and colleagues, serves as a media expert on television and in print, and has received numerous accolades including the prestigious Patients’ Choice Award. Dr. Donaldson’s innovative techniques and attention to detail have attracted patients from across the United States and Europe to his practice in Columbus, Ohio.

For breast augmentation, Columbus, Ohio, plastic surgeon, Dr. Jeffrey Donaldson offers patients a “scar-free” alternative with no incisions on the breasts. He uses an innovative endoscopic technique that allows him to place implants through the patient’s underarms.

Columbus, OH, August 18, 2010 (Vocus) — Columbus, OH, plastic surgeon Dr. Jeffrey Donaldson has recently seen the transaxillary endoscopic breast augmentation technique surge in popularity among his patients, as it provides a compelling addition to Columbus, OH, breast augmentation options and appeals to women looking to enhance their figures. He is one of the only surgeons in Columbus to offer this procedure that creates beautiful, natural results with less visible scarring than traditional methods.

The minimally invasive, or “scarless”, breast augmentation technique utilizes endoscopic equipment to make tiny incisions under the armpits. Progress is monitored on a television screen as space for the implant is created, and the implant shells are inserted. Once in place, the implants are filled with saline solution to match the patient’s desired volume.

“This surgery is particularly appealing because there are no incisions on the breasts” said Dr. Donaldson. “The small scars are well hidden, high in the armpit on both sides.” Traditionally, breast implants have been inserted directly through the breast, leaving permanent, visible scars around the nipple or near the lower breast fold.

Breast augmentation is the most popular cosmetic surgical procedure performed in the United States, and it generally has a high level of patient satisfaction. Recipients report feeling not only more feminine and beautiful but more confident and self-assured. “The best candidates for the scarless augmentation procedure are young women who are seeking a natural appearance,” according to Columbus, OH, plastic surgeon Dr. Donaldson. “The final result should not look fake — just larger and enhanced.”

The endoscopic method requires specialized training and equipment, and can therefore be more difficult for a surgeon to perform than traditional breast augmentation techniques. It is important to find a plastic surgeon like Dr. Donaldson who has specific skills and experience with this procedure, as well as a history of outstanding results. He is known for customizing his approach to each individual patient to achieve the best possible outcome.

“Dr. Donaldson was very considerate and patiently listened to my concerns about breast enhancement,” said one patient. “He made me feel very comfortable. I chose him as my surgeon and am so glad I did — my end result is beautiful.”

Contact Dr. Donaldson to schedule a personal consultation for Columbus, OH, breast augmentation via his website at www.donaldsonplasticsurgery.com , call 614-442-7610.

About Dr. Jeffrey Donaldson:

In private practice in Columbus, Ohio, Dr. Donaldson is a fellowship-trained plastic surgeon. He teaches medical students, residents and other physicians, and serves as a media expert on a variety of plastic surgery topics. In 2010, Dr. Donaldson was honored with a Patients’ Choice recognition.

Dr. Jeffrey Donaldson, Columbus, OH, plastic surgeon, now offers Dysport – a cosmetic facial injectable just approved by the FDA for use in the United States. Dr. Donaldson is one of the first plastic surgeons in Columbus, OH, to make Dysport available to his patients.

Columbus OH, July 22, 2009 (Vocus) — Columbus, Ohio, plastic surgeon, Dr. Jeffrey Donaldson, is now offering Dysport to his patients. Dysport is the newest wrinkle treatment to be approved by the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) for use in the United States. It has been safely used in Europe for years, and now patients in Columbus can enjoy its many benefits.

According to Dr. Donaldson, “Dysport relaxes the facial muscles that cause wrinkles.” Dysport is made from the same active ingredient as BOTOX Cosmetic, but it is a smaller molecule that may act more quickly and last a bit longer in some patients.

While Botox tends to take effect within 3-14 days, some patients have noticed the relaxing effects of Dysport even sooner. Patients seeking a last-minute “touch-up” before a social occasion or major event would appreciate this faster onset.

Furthermore, some patients have noticed that a single treatment with Dysport lasts longer than Botox – perhaps four months or more, compared to just three. To a patient this may represent a real value – fewer trips to the plastic surgeon’s office could translate into significant consumer savings with Dysport. Columbus, Ohio, plastic surgeon, Dr. Donaldson says, “The price is similar to BOTOX, but if it lasts longer, it may end up costing the patient a little less.”

Dysport is approved for treatment of forehead creases and frown lines between the eyes. The potential risks, or side effects are similar to those of BOTOX.

Ipsen Pharmaceuticals has granted Medicis, the maker of Restylane, the rights to manufacture and distribute Dysport in the United States. The company’s original name for this product was Reloxin, but the FDA’s final approval of the product maintained the European name, Dysport.

Columbus, Ohio, plastic surgeon, Dr. Jeffrey Donaldson, comments, “Dysport is the first real competition for BOTOX in the United States. Until now there has been a monopoly, so we are excited to finally offer Dysport to our patients as a legitimate, if not better alternative.”

For more information about plastic surgery or non-surgical cosmetic treatments, visit Dr. Donaldson online at https://www.donaldsonplasticsurgery.com.

About Dr. Donaldson:

Dr. Jeffrey Donaldson attended college at Yale University, then pursued his medical degree at The Ohio State University before being selected to a five-year general surgery residency at Maine Medical Center. He was chosen from over 100 surgeons to train in plastic surgery at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, and after completing this fellowship, he was selected for a highly prestigious advanced fellowship in oculoplastic and aesthetic surgery at Paces Plastic Surgery in Atlanta, Georgia with Emory faculty members. Dr. Donaldson is now in solo private practice as the owner of Donaldson Plastic Surgery in Columbus, Ohio.

This is a corrected version of the release published on 7/20/2009. Please excuse any inaccuracies in the original.

Dr. Jeffrey H. Donaldson is a fellowship-trained plastic surgeon in Columbus, Ohio.

Columbus, OH, March 04, 2009 (PR.com) — Dr. Jeffrey H. Donaldson has brought the most current concepts in plastic surgery from around the country to his practice in Columbus, Ohio. He has completed both fellowship and subspecialty fellowship training with some of the most influential leaders in the field, published scholarly articles and presented research at national and international meetings. He teaches medical students and resident surgeons and serves as a media consultant on a variety of plastic surgical topics.

Dr. Donaldson was born and raised in Columbus, Ohio. After graduating from Upper Arlington High School, he attended Yale University, played quarterback for coaching legend Carmen Cozza and majored in English with professors Harold Bloom and Robert Stone.

Dr. Donaldson pursued his medical degree at The Ohio State University and a five-year general surgery residency at Maine Medical Center in Portland, Maine. He was selected from over 100 surgeons to train in plastic surgery fellowship at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. After completing this program, he was selected for a highly prestigious and sought-after oculoplastic/aesthetic surgery sub-specialty fellowship at PacesPlastic Surgery in Atlanta with Emory faculty members Mark Codner, Rod Hester, Sonny McCord and Foad Nahai. During the last 12 years of his medical education and training, Dr. Donaldson was invited to join his mentors and become academic faculty, but he decided to return to Columbus to establish a practice near family in his hometown.

Dr. Donaldson has clinical privileges and responsibilities at Mount Carmel East, Mount Carmel West, Riverside Methodist Hospital, Dublin Methodist Hospital, Dublin Surgical Center, Central Ohio Surgical Institute, Green Street Surgery Center and The Sullivan Centre. He specializes in cosmetic surgery procedures for the face, breast and body as well as reconstructive surgery for adults and children with problems related to birth defects, cancer disfigurement and motor vehicle injuries.

Dr. Donaldson also offers more non-invasive procedures such as Botox, Restylane and Juvéderm for treating wrinkles; he champions an innovative approach to skin care and provides a line of skin products currently unavailable anywhere else in Ohio. Dr. Donaldson was among the first surgeons in the United States who became officially trained to use Evolence — a new, longer-lasting collagen filler for facial aging lines.

Dr. Donaldson uniquely combines his Ohio roots and strong sense of community with world-class training and faculty exposure. He merges a personal attention to detail with warmth, understanding, and years of clinical experience.