Fat grafting is a hot topic in aesthetic surgery circles, but who is actually doing it?
Quite a few are coming on board all the time, actually, as the techniques and technology of fat grafting (or fat transfer) grow increasingly sophisticated and accepted by the medical community.
It was not always that way. Fat grafting has moved beyond the patient safety issues that plagued its early use. In recent years—and during 2009 and 2010, in particular—we have seen the rollout of new generations of hardware devices and fat-cleaning and cell-washing techniques. Inquisitive practitioners have done important research and introduced approaches that make the use of fat grafting more practical and efficacious.
Even more recent is the pairing of fat grafting in cosmetic applications with stem cell research.
In cosmetic procedures, fat grafting has historically been unpredictable. The transferred fat may partially resorb back into the body or contour irregularities may arise. Not only was the technology of fat harvesting and cleaning inexact, but results varied widely among practitioners.
Most significant, perhaps, was the recent product launch and FDA approval of PureGraft 250, by Cytori Therapeutics Inc, San Diego, which lets the physician purify a fat graft and remove excess “graft fluid” in a controllable manner. According to the company, the system eliminates the need for physicians to have to deal with the inexact art of centrifugation of fat or other methods. The system also speeds up the time taken to create grafts.