Fat graft. What kind of result should I expect?

I recently had a fat graft to correct an indentation in my stomach following vaser lipo. The surgeon harvested the fat from the legs but did not purified before injecting it into the stomach. He only waited for the fat to separate and become more solid. He said that the purification was not necessary as the amount harvested was very small (about 15cc). Is this normal? What kind of result should I expect?

Doctor Answers 1

Fat graft purification

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Thank you for your question. The short answer is that "yes" for many surgeons this is a normal practice, but certainly there are many other ways to do this. Your results are more likely to be based on the experience of your surgeon and what has worked for them in the past. It sounds like your surgeon chose to separate the fatty tissue he harvested using gravity sedimentation which is a legitimate method of separating out fat cells from other cell types. The truth is that while you may find numerous opinions on this, and other websites, there is no consensus on the most effective method of fat transfer. "Purification" as you have termed it, is also known as "processing" or "manipulation" of the harvested fat. Some people do no processing at all, some centrifuge, wick, strain, filter, cell sort, add agents like PRP, etc and probably all are please with their results. It is not even clear how important it is to maintain viable or pure fat cells - some researchers actually think that the injected fat cells are replaced by other cell types and so the whole concept of purification may not matter at all. Others feel that stem cells in the fat, also known as the stromal vascular fraction, contain growth factors that are critical to the longterm success and regenerative capacity of fat transfers. At the end of the day, selecting an experienced surgeon who has had reproducible success with the technique they chose to perform on you will most likely impact the quality of your results. 

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.