Killing Two Fat Birds with One Stone
The reason I feel like I need to lose weight is not necessarily because I am unhappy with the amount of fat I have in total, but rather with the overall shape of my body. By that I mean, if all my fat was strategically placed - say on my chest and the top of my buttocks, my weight would actually be fairly ideal! It’s why when I heard about fat grafting, I was particularly intrigued. Fat grafting is the removal of fat from one part of the body to augment another. This got me thinking I can take all the fat from my mid-section, thighs and arms, and transfer it to my currently smallish breasts to quickly and miraculously achieve a Christina Hendricks awe-inspiring physique! If only it were that easy.
Fat grafting or fat transfer has indeed come a long way, but it still has some limitations. It works best for small areas like filling in wrinkles and creases on the face, and in-lieu of implants or other injectables. The process entails extracting your body fat through liposuction and processing it in a laboratory setting then re-injecting it into the desired area in one visit. Since fat is a living substance, you can lose up to 60% of what is initially removed, so more than what you need to enhance a certain area will need to be extracted. (No complaints there!).
Although there are risks associated with any surgical procedure, they are fairly rare when it comes to fat grafting. There will be swelling, which takes longer to subside on the face in particular, but you will feel great otherwise! (Just stay in.) Some of the more common problems following a fat grafting procedure can include lumps, oil cysts partial loss of fat volume and asymmetry, along with the risks generally associated with liposuction. The asymmetry is a tough one for me, but since we are dealing with living cells you can’t really predict precisely how it will all go. I suppose the worst-case scenario here is having to potentially go back to your plastic surgeon and have it evened out. This will require an additional visit, but is something you can discuss with your plastic surgeon ahead of time to see if she/he will do a follow up at a discounted rate or at no charge.
The benefits of fat grafting are obvious:
- It is semi-invasive but certainly less invasive than a full-fledged surgery.
- The removal and injection sites are very small, so recovery is quick.
- There will be no chance of tissue rejection since it’s your own tissue.
- Results are long-term. I mean just think, how long have you been hanging on to that dreaded fat in your problem areas? It does not seem to want to go away right? Well, once it’s (re)moved, chances are, it’ll stay put - only this time, right where you want it.
- It eliminates the fear some have of placing a foreign object or substance in the body.
Shockingly, when I asked about doing a breast augmentation using the fat grafting procedure, I was told that I don’t have enough fat. What? Did you say I do not have ENOUGH fat? Wow, that was a first! The doctor wasn’t trying to flatter me either. The fact is, the amount of fat tissue required for the size I would like (and it’s not even that big) requires quite a bit of fat, especially considering that there will likely be a high percentage of loss during the extraction and re-injection process. I really had to ask myself how many times I wanted to go back to a plastic surgeon’s office to get the entire thing done to my liking, even if it was possible. Major upside? Instead of having to replace implants every 10 or so years, you get to keep the new additions forever.
Killing two birds with one stone seems like the ideal situation, especially when it comes to plastic surgery. It may be 2 procedures, the liposuction then the re-injection of the fat, but think about the liposuction! You can definitely tell your plastic surgeon to take out more than they’ll need to use, since you’re there already. Obviously, this must all be done all within safe limits and at the doctor’s discretion. As with everything else, please consult a board-certified plastic surgeon and do your research!
As for me, I’m still toying with the idea. I think as the practice becomes perfected, I’ll be more inclined to move some of the unsightly fat to more appropriate places. We shall see!