Fat Transfer Surgery

Transferring the patient’s own fat cells is an excellent process whereby deep facial deformities, such as dips in the facial contours, facial irregularities and asymmetry can be reduced or altogether eliminated. It is also possible to use Facial Fat Transfer to combat certain appearances of facial aging, such as sunken cheeks or depressions.

The Procedure

The Fat Transfer Surgery is known as autologous fat transplanation or microlipoinjection. The first step is aspirating (extracting) fat for injection from the patient’s abdomen, buttocks, or certain parts of the thighs. Dr. Chugay makes sure that the aspirated fat has soft texture, as using harder fat (such as fat found on the back or legs) will not contour well on the patient’s face. The fat is then injected underneath the facial skin according to the desired contour with some overfilling.

Why is Overfilling Necessary?

Overfilling is necessary to allow for fat absorption in the weeks following treatment. The newly injected fat may temporarily make the face appear abnormally puffed out or swollen. This puffiness may last for several weeks or a little longer. Eventually, the face will attain the natural contour. If such temporary puffiness is a concern to you, Dr. Chugay may, at your request, overfill somewhat less. Even though, your results may not be as good in the long-term, you will have the puffiness in the short-term.

Is Autologous Fat Transfer Better Than Collagen Injections?

The dermal augmentation that is initially achieved with collagen is substantially lost within 6 to 9 months as the collagen is completely reabsorbed by the body. Fat transfer surgery will allow your new look to last longer. Furthermore, your own fat cells are less traumatic on your body than bovine collagen, and your own fat, unlike collagen will not produce an allergic reaction.

How Long Will My Improvement Last?

The duration of improvement varies significantly from patient to patient. The majority of the result should last over a year. Just how much is difficult to predict. With Dr. Chugay’s technique, up to 40% of your improvement will be permanent.

Is Dr. Chugay’s Technique Better or Different?

Experimental studies on fat transplantation have shown that a variable number of fat cells survive the injection process and this is related to the method in which the fat is removed and subsequently implanted into the tissues. Aspirating and injecting generate a considerable amount of physical trauma to the fat. The cumulative effect of the mechanical trauma imposed by fat aspiration and injection results in a high attrition rate of potentially viable fat cells.

A certain percentage of fat cells will remain unchanged. The standard practice yields about 10% fat cell survival. Dr. Chugay thoroughly minimizes physical damage to fat cells by using special needles, syringes and removal and injection technique. In addition to his technique for fat procurement, Dr. Chugay is able to use recently researched stem cell therapy to increase the overall take of fat cells injected, up to a total take of 90%!

There are other factors affecting the longevity of improvement. Current evidence suggests that a significant portion of the permanent improvement is due to the formation of fibrous tissues following fat injections. Dr. Chugay carefully and slowly injects the fat utilizing a micro-drop technique that enables the greatest amount of fibrous tissue formation.

Thus, by ensuring maximum fat cell survival and maximum fibrous tissue formation, Dr. Chugay is able to provide improved longevity and permanency to Facial Fat Transfer.


Dr. Chugay utilizes a combination of local anesthesia and IV sedation. You will be asleep and comfortable during the procedure. The risky general anesthesia is not used. Dr Chugay is pleased to offer Goldilocks Anesthesia.

IV sedation:

  • Is Less Risky
  • Assures Quicker Recovery
  • Causes Less Nausea and Vomiting

Many surgeons still utilize general anesthesia. After all, the patient is completely paralyzed and is easier to work on. However, surgeon’s ease does not translate to the patient’s advantage. Another reason why so many surgeons choose general anesthesia over IV sedation is the experience of their anesthesiologist. It takes more experience to administer IV sedation. Many anesthesiologists and nurses anesthetists do not know how to handle it properly. Many anesthesiologists have little practical experience with sedation. It takes a lot of skill to make certain that patients are comfortably asleep and do not wake up during surgery.