Shorr FACE Institute
Fat Transfer

To restore fullness and youthful contours to the face, many patients are turning to fat transfer rather than repeated visits for injectable fillers. Fat is usually harvested from the abdomen through a tiny belly button incision. Harvested fat is carefully prepared and meticulously placed or injected into the orbit, eyelids, eyebrow pads, temples, tear troughs, cheeks, nasolabial folds or lips. 

Dr. Shorr has performed fat transfer for decades. He consistently achieves smooth, lasting results. If you are considering facial enhancement, restoring youthful fullness to the face through fat transfer may be an excellent option for you.

Before surgery, patient had hollowing of all four eyelids and upper cheeks.
Deflated areas are now full, round and youthful.
Will Transferred Fat Survive?
Often patients have questions or concerns about whether transferred fat will “take” or live. Fat is made up of millions of cells. These cells can be transplanted, much like plants, into another area of the body where, under the right conditions, they will thrive. Therefore, a surgeon is similar in many ways to a gardener and the cells that make up transferred fat can be thought of as millions of tiny plants.To illustrate, let’s call the cells rose bushes and say that a gardener plants millions of rose bushes in columns and rows. Some may die, some may struggle for a while and then turn brown, some may hang in there and have a few leaves, some will do well and produce a few flowers, and some may flourish and be lush and vibrant. Why does this happen? Why don’t they all flourish and remain lush and vibrant? The answer is that the gardener either did not prepare the bed properly into which they would be transplanted, he crowded the plants into too tight of an area, he did not make sure the plants would have the nutrients they would need to survive after transplantation - or a combination thereof. Living things want to thrive, that is their nature, but they won’t thrive if they are not handled properly or don’t get what they require. The more knowledgeable, skilled, experienced and passionate the gardener about transplanting rose bushes and providing them the optimal conditions for survival, the better his rose bushes will not only “take” but thrive.
This patient also had hollowing of all four eyelids and upper cheeks.
Hollowed areas are now full; eyelids have smoother, more youthful contours.
What About Lumpiness and Deflation?
If healthy harvested fat is placed into spaces that are too tight, such as in groups or “wads,” the cells at the center of the bulges will not be adjacent to what they need to live – oxygen and nutrients provided by the blood. The bulges may also be seen through the skin as lumps. Over time, the fat at the center of the bulges will die and the areas that were filled in by the fat will deflate and could appear even more lumpy and uneven. These dead cells are recognized by the body as “waste” and are eventually carried away and out of the body. This is a common problem with fat transfer that is done improperly and too quickly.

Whether fat is placed in tiny pearls (healthy spheres of fat harvested from the abdomen), or injected in very fine, thread-like passes which builds a matrix of “fat threads,” it is placed so that it has the optimal conditions for survival. Fat will survive if provided the oxygen and nutrients it needs by the surrounding healthy native tissue. This technique allows for as much transplanted fat to survive as possible and the previously depressed areas to remain full and smooth. This technique is also very delicate and time consuming and takes experience, skill and patience in addition to attention to aesthetic detail.
A passionate gardener, like a passionate surgeon, will be successful at what he does because he carefully plans and executes the transplantation of living things. Gardeners - or surgeons - who repeatedly have trouble transplanting “rose bushes” may conclude that transplanting them and getting them to thrive is just too difficult. As a result they may not wish to do the procedure to avoid having unhappy patients or they may recommend that the patient not have it done at all.

Patients often report they’ve been told that there are too many problems associated with fat transfers.
Dr. Shorr and our surgeons, however, perform fat transfer surgery and other graft transfer surgeries to the eyelids and face routinely with excellent results. 
This young patient had premature hollowing of the lower eyelids and midface.
Fat transfer surgery restored the deflated areas with natural looking results.

Who Should Perform Facial Fat Transfer Surgery?

When choosing a surgeon to perform fat transfer to the face, and especially to the eyelids, look for a cosmetic and reconstructive facial surgeon who specializes in the eyelids, orbit, and tear drain system. It’s also important that he or she has completed an American Society of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (ASOPRS) fellowship. This indicates your surgeon is not only a board certified ophthalmologist who knows the anatomy and structure of the eyelids and orbit and all surrounding areas, but also has had extensive training in ophthalmic plastic reconstructive and cosmetic surgery. Dr. Shorr is Director of the Fellowship in Ophthalmic Plastic Reconstructive and Cosmetic Surgery at the Jules Stein Eye Institute, UCLA School of Medicine. He and his associates are board certified ophthalmologists as well as ophthalmic plastic reconstructive and cosmetic surgeons who have completed an ASOPRS fellowship.

Dr. Norman Shorr is an early pioneer and innovator of many cosmetic and reconstructive eyelid, eyebrow, forehead and midface procedures performed today worldwide. He and his associates continue to innovate and contribute to the specialty of cosmetic and reconstructive facial surgery. Call today to schedule your personal consultation!


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(310) 278-1839

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We specialize in cosmetic and reconstructive surgery of the eyelids and face, as well as non-surgical cosmetic treatments and services. Our office is conveniently located in Beverly Hills near Los Angeles and bordered by Orange and Ventura Counties. Contact us today!



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