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Fat Grafting vs. Liposuction


Clothing that decreases the appearance of an unshapely body is growing in popularity. Stores carry everything from Spanx to tunics, to slimming leggings all with the hope to help contour the body to a specific look. Another option increasing in popularity is body contouring surgeries such as fat grafting and liposuction to obtain desired aesthetic goals. Of these two procedures, which one is the right one? The below content explores the two procedures in more depth to help determine the answer:

What is Fat Grafting?

Fat grafting is one option for those who want cosmetic surgery to reshape the body. Fat is removed from overly fatty areas such as the stomach and love handles and then transferred by injection into other parts of the body. This procedure adds volume to areas that appear unshapely (for example the buttocks, breasts, or cheeks). Fat transfer is an effective way to reshape the body surgically.

What Body Parts Are Ideal for Fat Grafting?

Fat grafting is an excellent option for someone who has aging creases and lines on their face or hollow cheeks. However, another area of the body that people request to have surgically contoured with fat grafting is the buttocks. Larger amounts of fat are moved to the buttocks to give it a more shapely appearance.

What is Liposuction?

Patients who have fat deposits that can’t be corrected by diet and exercise can take advantage of liposuction. Liposuction aka liposculpture is a body contouring procedure that removes fat via a vacuum-like device, but it requires a significant level of experience and technique by the surgeon to achieve an outstanding result. The idea is to eliminate enough fat and thus contour the body to a desirable shape.

What Body Parts Are Ideal for Liposuction?

There are many parts of the body where liposuction is effective including the stomach, buttocks, thighs, knees, chin, cheeks, and upper arms. The most frequent requests for liposuction treatment are for the abdomen, buttocks, and thigh areas. However, this is very patient-dependent and not all patients are good candidates for this procedure.

Do People Have Both Liposuction and Fat Grafting Done?

Yes. It is common for a cosmetic surgery patient to want a larger amount of body contouring and thus take advantage of both procedures. For example, a plastic surgery patient who has more fat around the waist and flatter buttocks might want to remove the fat from their abdomen and use it to create perkier buttocks.

Although fat grafting and liposuction are both body contouring procedures, their differences are important to note. Dr. Shahram Salemy, a Seattle Plastic Surgeon, believes it is important to understand those differences before choosing the method that will ultimately provide plastic surgery patients the body they want.

Related Topics:

Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation: Why using your own fat to enhance your breast is becoming a great option for selected patients

Dr. Shahram Salemy Close Up

Shahram Salemy, MD, FACS

Dr. Salemy is an award-winning, ASPS Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon and member of the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (ASAPS) practicing in Seattle, WA. As Clinical Associate Professor at the University of Washington's School of Medicine, Department of Surgery, Division of Plastic Surgery and President of The Northwest Society of Plastic Surgeons, Dr. Shahram Salemy strives to advance the field and practice of plastic surgery for both his patients and his university students. Learn more about Dr. Shahram Salemy and his esteemed background.
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We have chosen not to display before and after photos of labiaplasties given the sensitive nature of this anatomy. However, we will be happy to show you before and after photos at your consultation so that you may see the kinds of results that are possible with this procedure.