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I am looking into fat transfer to fix a loss of facial soft tissue.

Your questions answered by our surgeon, Lucian Ion, FRCS(Plast)

Asked on 24 June 2012


After a bad trauma I lost a lot of facial soft tissue from my cheeks. I am looking into fat transfer to fix this.

I am told once the fat takes it will be there for life, is this true?

I have since read that fat cells have a life span and get renewed 10% per year. Will this still happen to the grafted fat or will it fade 10% per year?


Fat transfer is indeed a very good tool for restoring facial volume.

In terms of the longevity of the result, the biology of the process is not fully understood. Different studies have shown however that there is long-term maintenance of the treatment, but without being as specific as you describe.

Since the normal part of the facial tissues will also continue to change in time, one of the important elements is whether there will be symmetry in these changes. Symmetry depends partly on the volume and partly on the characteristics of the skin and scar tissue in the area, and will be difficult to interpret.

Although it is impossible to give you an accurate timeline for the changes, it would be fair to say that fat transfer is likely to be the treatment of choice for what you describe.

Lucian Ion Cosmetic Surgeon Mr Lucian Ion FRCS(Plast)
129 Harley Street

Get in touch. Talk to our helpful team or book a consultation with Mr Lucian Ion. Call 0207 486 7757

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