The use of autologous (own) fat as a filler substance for wrinkles and sunken facial areas is essentially nothing new and own fat is certainly one of the oldest soft tissue augmentation materials known to mankind. Its advantages: The good and almost always unlimited availability as well as the optimal compatibility of the body’s own natural substance. Novel is that special consideration is paid to the anatomy, ensuring better aesthetic results and increased durability. Dr. Gerhard Sattler, founder and medical director of Rosenpark Klinik in Darmstadt explains the method and its advantages:
How does the Facial Lipo Reset (FLR) method work?
The harvested autologous fat is filtered and freed from connective tissue fibers, blood and the oil phase. The processed fat is then filled into syringes and, in confirmity with the patient’s anatomy, inserted into the tissue layers via thin (18 gauge) cannulas until the tissue or volume deficit has normalized. In contrast to the classical Coleman LipoStructure method, the FLR method uses the existing anatomy as the basis of the tissue architecture to avoid changing the individual appearance of the patient.
What is the fundamental difference between the two methods?
In the LipoStructure method, the subcutaneous tissue zone is intentionally mobilized, and the harvested fat incorporated diffusely. Within the framework of wound healing, the tissue conditions are then homogenized and harmonized. With the FLR method, on the other hand, the body’s own fat tissue is injected exactly into the space in which fat tissue is located or used to be located. This means that the fat is applied in an orderly manner into a fat chamber while preserving the architectural equilibrium and structure. The FLR method may, therefore, also be described as a targeted augmentation, while the LipoStructure method can be regarded as a destructive homogenization treatment. The latter is an anatomy-independent lipofilling without taking the recipient site, the anatomy and statics of the treatment zone into consideration. Simply put, the basic intention here was simply to “inflate” or fill out.
What is the advantage if the fat is injected in conformity with the anatomy?
Aesthetic anatomy allows the knowledge of fat chambers, retaining ligaments and various tissue layers. Injected fatty tissue has the best survival rate if it is injected into rooms in which fatty tissue is already located. Fat tissue placed between fasciae (connective tissue) or septa has no survival rate.
Which areas can be filled out?
Mainly the superficial fatty tissue layers of the face as well as the deeper localized fat chambers are augmented. If the concept is followed, the tissue situation to be corrected is restored almost by itself.
How high is the growth rate or degeneration of the fat cells?
The growth rate is generally much lower than generally stated. The lasting correction effect in all minimally invasive augmentation procedures is the stimulation of the fibroblast cells. This means that the metabolic cells of the skin form connective tissue around the injected material and, in this way, create a permanent, new framework of connective tissue. This applies to autologous fat as well as hyaluronic acid or other injection materials. The fat tissue actually injected is therefore not necessarily responsible for the built-up in tissue volume.
How swollen is the face after the treatment?
Since the FLR method only treats deficient parts of the face and works with blunt cannulas along anatomical layers, the face is barely or only slightly swollen. In most cases there is hardly any visible swelling the following day meaning that the so-called downtime is between one and a maximum of four days.
How long does the result last?
The durability of a treatment result is dependent on many different factors and is individual for each patient. One should start out with a reduced expectation on the part of the doctor and the patient and always with the option of repeating the treatment until the desired result has been permanently achieved. A period of three to four months should elapse between treatments.
Does fat have to be gathered each time or can it be preserved?
It used to be possible to freeze autologous fat if certain conditions were met. However, since the legal situation has changed in most federal states in Germany, the freezing of own fat is no longer permitted. This means that it must be harvested anew for every treatment.
Sponsered by Rosenpark Klinik, Photo: @up_n_co
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