Fat grafting, also known as fat injection or fat transfer, is a safe, long-lasting procedure that produces natural-looking results. The procedure involves extracting fat from a fatty area, such as your thighs, and injecting it into another area in the body that may be lacking in volume, such as your face, breasts, buttocks, or feet. Fat grafting can address a variety of issues, including correcting deformities left from previous surgeries, reducing signs of aging, and decreasing foot pain.
In structural fat grafting, the doctor gently and manually removes fat via liposuction from one or more areas of the body. The fat then goes through processing to remove unwanted materials, isolating the living fat and associated stem cells. The surgeon then carefully places the processed fat in its new location. Structural fat grafting can augment the breast and buttocks, correct irregularities or deformities, or provide a more naturally shaped body.
UPMC’s plastic surgery team performs a variety of fat grafting procedures on many different parts of the body.
UPMC’s team of plastic surgery experts includes:
J. Peter Rubin, MD: Dr. Rubin is the chair of the UPMC Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and co-director of the UPMC Aesthetic Plastic Surgery Center. Board-certified in plastic surgery, Dr. Rubin co-founded UPMC’s Life After Weight Loss program. In addition to his work at UPMC, Dr. Rubin is renowned worldwide for his work in plastic and reconstructive surgery. He served as president of the International Fat Applied Technology Society, a group of international scientists studying the use of discarded fat for stem cells. He also works on the American Society of Plastic Surgery’s Bariatric Task Force, which creates safety guidelines and educational programs. Dr. Rubin has received the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, a prestigious honor for young researchers. His research includes leading a U.S. Department of Defense-sponsored study of regenerative treatment; and the effects of large-volume liposuction on metabolism. A widely published author, he is editing a textbook on post-bariatric plastic surgery.
Sydney Coleman, MD: Board-certified in plastic and reconstructive surgery, Dr. Coleman assists with structural fat grafting. The procedure harvests fat from one or more areas of the body through liposuction and places it elsewhere. The procedure can enhance, augment, or shape several different areas of the body. It also can help fix scarring, dents, and other skin irregularities. Dr. Coleman is a member of several national plastic and reconstructive organizations, including the American Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, and the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. Dr. Coleman is a widely published author and frequent national lecturer on the topic of fat grafting.
Jeffrey Gusenoff, MD: Dr. Gusenoff is a board-certified plastic surgeon at UPMC and a professor at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. He was founder and director of the University of Rochester Medical Center Life After Weight Loss program and was director from 2008-12. He also is a widely published author on body contouring, including techniques, safety, and social issues. He researched and pioneered the foot fat grafting procedure in collaboration with Beth Gusenoff, DPM. They led a two-year study on the procedure, which harvests fat from elsewhere on the body and places it in the foot to relieve pain caused by certain conditions. The minimally invasive procedure combines methods of plastic surgery and podiatry.