I had a full facial fat transfer 3 months ago. Immediately post-op , one side of my face was much more swollen than the other and remained so. The swelling has subsided quite a bit on both sides, but now, 3 months later, the side of my face that was most swollen is still swollen. How much longer will the swelling last?
3 Months Post Face Fat Transfer; One Side of Face is Still More Swollen Than the Other.
Doctor Answers 5
Asymetry 3 months after Face Fat Transfer/Fat Grafting may require additional Fat Transfer for symetry
Most of the reduction of swelling after Face Fat Transfer or Fat Grafting caused by death of fat cells and resolution of surgical swelling is complete by 3 months. However, with massage of the swollen area, in my experience, some further reduction of the swelling can occur up to 6 months.
I have my patients wait until 6 months before considering further Facial Fat Transfer or Fat Grafting on the opposite side of the swollen area of the face to achieve better symmetry.
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Wait a full 6 months, then reassess, and have additional fat transferred to your face for symmetry. Thank you for your question and good luck with everything.
Swelling after Fat Grafting
There are many reasons that you can have swelling after fat grafting. It would be useful to know how much fat was placed on each side. It may be that more fat was placed on the "swollen" side. You may have had a small collection of blood under the skin with subsequent inflammation, or you may have had more fat "take" on the side that appears swollen. Fat grafting can be quite variable in its survival. At three to six months, usually what you see is what you get. You can try massage of the swollen side, which may slowly help to reduce the swelling if it is an inflammatory reposnse. I recommend raising your concerns with your surgeon and seeing what he says. Most likely he will recommend patience for now.
Daniel Medalie, MD
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Swelling after fat grafting
Selling after fat grafting is not unusual. However, after three months, it should be resolved. Without seeing your before and after pictures or examining you in person, it is hard to give you specific advice.
This could be swelling ad may take another 3 months. It could have been originaly a hematoma and will take a longer time to resolve. Ask your plastic surgeon who injected the fat for examination and recommendation, possible mild massage or external ultrasound. Do not do any of these til you check with your plastic surgeon.
These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.