Under-eye fat transfer is a non-invasive cosmetic procedure that can be used to add volume to under eye hollows. The procedure is done under local anesthesia and target site is first rubbed with an antiseptic. The cosmetic treatment involves harvesting your own fat from the abdomen or thighs which is then injected in smaller amounts under the lower eyes. This procedure is safe and can be carried out by a qualified physician. A board-certified plastic surgeon like Dr. Bloch can consider giving you this treatment if you are in good health and have realistic expectations. Most men and women over the age of 30 lose volume on their lower eyes and can consider a fat injection.
Fat injection requires a more extensive procedure than “off-the-shelf” soft tissue fillers.
A “donor area” must be determined (such as the abdomen or buttocks) and liposuction is used to extract the fat. The suctioned fat can then be transferred to the face, as a graft.
The grafted fat then has to redevelop a blood supply in order to survive.
Side effects of under-eye fat transfer
Like many cosmetic procedures, under-eye fat transfer has its own complications. The common side effect that most patients have is swelling and bruising on the lower eyes which may take up to 2 weeks to disappear. Asymmetry complications may develop; one eye may have more volume compared to the other one after treatment. Unevenness or lumpiness may also develop. Sometimes, the correction achieved on the treated area may reduce or disappear if the transfer fat is not absorbed or if the fat cells die. Having a professional like Dr. Bloch give you an under-eye fat transfer will reduce most of these complications.
If you have facial creases, such as laugh lines, smile lines, and crow’s-feet, fat can be removed from your abdomen, thighs, or other areas and be injected into your face. Acne scars and sunken areas of the face, lips, and cheeks can also be filled in. Your plastic surgeon can even use grafted fat to minimize lines between your nose and mouth, correct skin depressions or indentations and minimize forehead wrinkles.
After getting an under-eye fat transfer, you will be observed in the recovery room before you get discharged. The target area will not be dressed but the donor area may have dressing. You will be given painkillers, oral drugs as well as antibiotic ointments to prevent infection. Your doctor will advise you to stay away from activities that will cause your eyes to crease or wrinkle in the first 2 days of recovery. Sleeping on your back will also help in fat distribution. You will also be advised not to touch the treated area and avoid swimming, make-up, vigorous exercise and hot beverages. If your fat has worn-off after 4 weeks, you can consider a repeat fat injection. Dr. Bloch will also recommend follow-up visits to monitor your progress. Average recovery from an eyelid-fat transfer is one week and the results can last for up to 3 to 5 years.