Facial fat grafts decrease in volume after transplantation. This observation is based on overall facial three-dimensional analyses, because there is sparse information on volume changes in well-defined aesthetic areas. The authors aimed to assess the overall and, more specifically, the local volumetric effects of facial fat grafting and relate these effects to patient satisfaction up to 1 year after treatment.
All consecutive adult female patients who were scheduled for facial fat grafting without additional surgical procedures were asked to participate. All patients underwent the same fat grafting method. An algorithm-based personalized aesthetic template was applied to define specific aesthetic areas on the preoperative three-dimensional image. Objective outcome parameters [i.e., three-dimensional volume differences, patient satisfaction (FACE-Q questionnaire)] were measured at baseline and at 6 weeks, 6 months, and 12 months after fat grafting.
Of 33 female patients who underwent a facial fat graft procedure, 23 patients had complete three-dimensional data and were eligible for analysis. The highest volume gain was observed 6 weeks after grafting and was followed by a gradual loss thereafter. Overall and in the zygomatic area, a substantial gain in volume was still present 1 year after grafting, whereas this effect was lost in the lip area. FACE-Q scales Satisfaction with Facial Appearance Overall and Satisfaction with Cheeks improved too, whereas scores for Lines: Lips returned to baseline levels. The improvement in FACE-Q scales was in agreement with the objective change in volume.
Gain in overall and local volumetric effects is accompanied by comparable changes in patient satisfaction.
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