Florida surgeon opens fat 'bank' for liposuction patients
November 7, 2011
Most people undergo liposuction surgery to remove stubborn fat deposits and improve their appearance without worrying where the actual fat will go once it's gone from their bodies.
But a Florida plastic surgeon is taking steps to preserve the fat harvested during liposuction surgeries. He says that it can be frozen and saved for use in later surgeries where fat is needed to serve as a filler.
According to WTSP-TV news, the doctor has opened a "fat bank" in Orlando to store his patient's unwanted fat. The storage facility is called the "Liquid Gold Center."
"We put the patient to sleep once. Do the [liposuction]. Get the fat out once and have as much as we need for later injections," the plastic surgeon told the Orlando Sentinel.
The stored fat, which is drained and cleaned before being frozen at a temperature of minus 192 degrees Celsius, can then be defrosted later on for use in fat injection surgeries.
The Florida doctor says his patented system of freezing fat for later use is a great option, as it helps patients avoid having to undergo additional surgeries to harvest fat. But some plastic surgeons say using frozen fat may be risky.
"No good data exists to substantiate the fact that frozen fat does well or is metabolically viable," a Georgetown University plastic surgery professor told the newspaper.
Others say the best fat bank is the human body.
"You only need 30 to 50 cc's for a facial procedure," a Boston-based plastic surgeon who has studied fat transfer told the news source. "You can always find that somewhere on a woman's body. And that's the best bank of all."
According to the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), fat injections are commonly used for areas of the body including the face, lips and hands. It can be used to improve body contour, reduce the appearance of scars, fill depressions created by liposuction and rejuvenate aging hands and faces.
According to Surgery.org, autologous fat is a safe, long-lasting and natural-appearing filler that is used to replace volume in areas where it is diminished. Fat grafting usually involves harvesting fat from one part of the body, washing/ purifying it, and then carefully re-injecting it with specially designed needles into designated areas.
While some may find the idea of banking and recycling their unwanted fat enticing, they should know that it comes with a price. WTSP-TV news reports that the cost of storing 250 to 300 cubic centimeters of fat is $900 for the first year and $200 a year after that.
The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), is recognized as the world's leading organization devoted entirely to aesthetic plastic surgery and cosmetic medicine of the face and body. ASAPS is comprised of over 2,600 Plastic Surgeons; Active Members are certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (USA) or by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and have extensive training in the complete spectrum of surgical and nonsurgical aesthetic procedures. International Active Members are certified by equivalent boards of their respective countries. All members worldwide adhere to a strict Code of Ethics and must meet stringent membership requirements.
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