Fat Grafts and Hardened Mass During Recovery

Two weeks ago I had fat grafts to correct irregular jaw line on one side of my face. In that time the area I had surgery on feels like it hardend into one big mass and the area looks over filled. Is this just part of the healing process?

Doctor Answers 5

Hardened fat injections or fat grafts

Sometimes, especially if fat injections are administered in a large volume per injeciton, or the fat is of a larger size, it may form a more hardened mass or even a cyst. There can be a delayed infection so if it's tender you need to have it evaluated. Your doctor may recommend treatment for the mass.

Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

Fat grafting

Generally, most surgeons over fill the area that needs fat grafing since some of the fat will resorb.  The firmness is probably due to swelling after the surgery.  It will take about 6 weeks for most of the swellimg and the firmness to subside.

Siamak Agha, MD, PhD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 106 reviews

Firmness after fat transfers

Without photographs, it is impossible to determine exactly what is going on. It is normal to have some degree of firmness and swelling after fat transfers, and this should improve over time. I would recommend discussing this with your surgeon, who should be in a good position to make sure there is nothing else going on.

Lawrence Iteld, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Most likely the hardened mass will go away after a fat transfer

I warn all my patients after a fat transfer that for the first 2 to 4 weeks they can feel that the fat is very hard when it is not in reality.  it is due to the swelling around the fat.  this is particularly evident i find in the cheeks and the chin area.  however, this answer really relates to my patients and not to another surgeon's work.  the other answers on here are also valid.  if too much fat was placed, the fat could turn into a cyst with the center dying or it could be a hematoma.  however, in my hands i state that it is just a normal process in the healing phase.


dr. sam lam
dallas, texas

Sam Lam, MD, FACS
Dallas Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 57 reviews

Mass after fat transfer

this could resolve on its own if it is a perhaps a collection of fluid or small hematoma, or it could be fat injected in a different amount.  time will tell.  I would give it 6 -8 weeks.  Meanwhile, you should visit your surgeon for evaluation.


Dr. Malouf

Peter Malouf, DO
Dallas Dermatologist
4.7 out of 5 stars 87 reviews

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.