What is the Optimal Healing Time After Fat Injections to Remove?

I had fat injected into my upper cheeks with small injections in multiple layers from my stomach 4 months ago and I'm not fond of it. How long I should wait to get it removed and how? I have read that it is better to remove it early and use steroid injections and I have also read to wait 6-12 months and have to do liposuction. I would love feedback from surgeons who have removed fat injections before and I am looking for an expert who could perform this. Prefer non-invasive but am open. Thanks!

Doctor Answers 3

Removal of fat grafting from the face.

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Occasionally, the results following fat grafting to the face can be undesirable.  Adverse outcomes are related to 1 or more of the following factors:  a) contour irregularities due to either uneven graft placement or uneven graft take, b) asymmetry between sides, or c) overfill in a given aesthetic unit such as the cheek.  In selected cases the best course of action is to remove the fat.  The most predictable method to achieve this is with micro-liposuction.  It would be advisable to wait at least 9 to 12 months to allow complete graft healing and/or any further resorption that may yet have to occur.   

Complications of fat transfers

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I have been treating complications of fat transfers for many years both my own and other surgeons.  At 4 months it is difficult to assess the result and I strongly believe that you should wait.  It is pretty straight forward to remove fat in the cheeks and usually microliposuction is effective.  Steroid injections are not as precise.  

If you feel that you are really distorted it is not unreasonable to do a very conservative low dose steroid injection about now (4 months) and I have done this in my patients.

Mark Glasgold, MD
Highland Park Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Fat Transfer

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Without a picture it would be difficult to assess the situation with your cheeks. One needs to evaluate the entire face and the harmony of the proportions of the face. You are not going to find an EXPERT in fat removal of fat  injected. It is not a procedure that is done frequently. I surely would not recommend steroid injection to dissolve the fat. After good evaluation would consider micro-liposuction

Samir Shureih, MD
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon

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