What is the "Down Time" for Facial Fat Injection Procedures?
Doctor Answers 7
Downtime for facial fat grafting
The downtime for facial fat grafting is very hard to predict from person to person but in general you will look good in 2 weeks. I find that this procedure does cause a lot of bruising particularly when done around the tear trough which is the most common place that I inject fat. I also find that when I'm doing full facial rejuvenation procedures including Facelift, eyelids, brows, etc. ( which is the most common type of procedure I perform) that the fat transfer is the procedure that causes the most bruising and swelling. Fat transfer is usually billed as a minimal downtime procedure which I agree is true, meaning that you able to function immediately after wards, however, this is misleading because you may look beat up for a substantial period of time.
With age we tend to lose facial fat and the face deflates. Fat transfer is a good procedure in facial rejuvenation planning.
Fat has to be gently taken from one area of the body, processed and cleaned thoroughly, then injected in small pearls in layers in the face.
Recovery is very quick, but is dependant on the experience of the doctor. There is some swelling and bruising that will resolve with in the first two weeks. During that peroid of time you still are very presentable and will be able to hide it with makeup. It is important that you be healthy, on no blood thinners ad no Aspirin. Ice the face after surgery, elevate the head, and no sternous activity. This will help in decreasing the chances of bruises and swelling.
Choose your Board Certified Plastic Surgeon very carefuly
Swelling after Fat Grafting
Count on looking puffy for a good week. During the second week you may start to like the way the look and by the third week or so you should be quite happy and probably hoping it stays the way it is. You will likely lose volume as the last bit of swelling resolves around that time, and then lose a bit more volume over the next three to six months. By the six month point you should be looking at a relatively final result. Occasionally at that point I will do a "touch up" if extra fat was harvested. Bottom line: don't make any major plans for 1-2 weeks.
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Facial fat transfer
Down time form many procedures is dependent on your reaction to surgery. For example, swelling and bruising can vary from one patient to another. However, most people will have some swelling and bruising for 7 to 14 days.
Fat injection downtime
A bit more than synthetic facial dermal fillers
Fat Grafting Recovery
The recovery of fat grafting involves 4 things in my opinion:
1. who is doing your procedure. i tend to use a lot less fat to get the same results so i tend to have a shorter recovery. however, that being said, i believe that a lot of little areas need filling to create an overall balanced rejuvenation. because of that, you may have a little more swelling across the entire face than if someone is just filling a small area of the face. that is another factor is how much of the face needs to be covered.
2. how old you are. the older you are typically the more fat is required. the more fat required, the more swelling and therefore more recovery time. someone in the late 30s and 40s may have less recovery time. someone in the 50s and 60s may require more time. how much time? hard to give you precise answers but see below.
3. luck. some people bruise more than others. i cannot promise you. you just may. limiting alcohol, vitamin e, fish oil the week before is helpful but you might still bruise. i use a laser to manage bruising a week out but that is no guarantee all bruising will be gone.
4. perception. i have oftentimes seen patients whom i think look great but they do not think so because they are much more critical of themselves than others are of them. i say conservatively that at 1 week you will most likely not like it and others will not like it. at 2 weeks you may still not like it but typically most people will think you are fine (cannot promise that) and at 3 weeks it has more universal appeal (for both you and others).
pain and discomfort and not wanting to work are not so much of an issue. it is mainly swelling and possibly bruising. watch my video on recovery after fat grafting for a more elaborate and detailed response.