Fat, The Filler that Lasts. And Lasts.
Posted On Aug 15, 2011
Obtaining a youthful facial appearance is difficult, and keeping it is even harder. Cosmetic fillers that use hyaluronic acid (like radiesse and juvederm) do a great job in filling wrinkles, cracks and crevices, but typically last only six months to a year. Using your own fat is another alternative, and lasts much longer, according to numerous studies. The latest comes from two researchers who discovered that fat injected under the eye can last up to three years or more. Cory C. Yeh, MD, and Edwin F. Williams III, MD, from the Albany Medical Center in New York, conducted a study published in the Archives of Facial Plastic Surgery that tracked photos of 99 people who had the procedure done between 2004 and 2008. The patients were mostly women between 35 and 71 years old. The team rated the improvement of patients in comparison to pre-surgery photos. Within a year or less, 51 percent saw mild improvement and 44 percent had marked improvement. After two to three years, 68 percent saw mild improvement and 18 percent saw marked improvement. Other doctors have reported longer results, but these researchers only had information on 22 patients that far out. “We know that the person’s going to continue to age and that they’re going to continue to lose volume” under the eyes, Yeh said. “I would have been shocked if we’d said, ‘No, everybody remains perfect.’” Fat transfer is “appealing to many patients because this is a natural way of using their own body fat,” says Yeh. The downside? “I never inject a lot of fat in the face, because you can’t get the stuff out,” says Palm Beach plastic surgeon Harold Bafitis, MD. “You have to be conservative.”