Introduction: Autologous fat is ideal soft tissue filler. It is easily accessible, biocompatible, cheap, and it provides both volume augmentation and skin quality improvement. Fat grafting has been used since 1893, but it has only gained widespread popularity since the development of modern liposuction by Colemann and Illouz in the 1980s. Every year more than half a million facial fat grafting procedures are carried out worldwide and the trend is rapidly increasing. Overall, general complications associated with facial fat grafting are assumed to be around 2%. Is that true? Material and Methods: Until July 2021, a systematic search of the literature was performed interrogating PubMed search engines. The following algorithm was used for the research: (fat graft OR lipofilling) AND face AND complications. Exclusion criteria applied hierarchically were review articles, not reporting recipient site complications; not in English and paediatric population. Abstracts were manually screened by LS, GS, JM and PDS separately and subsequently matched for accuracy. Pertinent full-text articles were retrieved and analysed and data were extracted from the database. The flow chart of article selection is described following the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) statement. Results: In total, 462 papers were identified by PubMed search. A total of 359 were excluded: 38 papers were not in English, 41 were review articles, 279 articles did not report recipient site complications and 1 was not on human subjects. Average complication rate ranged from 1.5% to 81.4%. A total of 298 adverse events were identified: 40 (13.4%) intravascular injections, 13 (4.3%) asymmetry, 57 (19.1%) irregularities, 22 (7.4%) graft hypertrophy, 21 (7%) fat necrosis, 73 (24.5%) prolonged oedema, 1 (0.3%) infection, 6 (2%) prolonged erythema, 15 (5%) telangiectasia and 50 (16.8%) cases of acne activation. Conclusions: FFG related side effects could be resumed in three categories: severe, moderate, and minor. Severe (13.4%) side effects such as intravascular injection or migration require neurological or neurosurgical management and often lead to permanent disability or death. Moderate (38.3%) side effects such as fat hypertrophy, necrosis, cyst formation, irregularities and asymmetries require a retouch operation. Minor (48.3%) side effects such as prolonged oedema or erythema require no surgical management. Despite the fact that the overall general complication rate of facial fat grafting is assumed to be around 2%, the real complication rate of facial fat grafting is unknown due to a lack of reporting and the absence of consensus on side effect definition and identification. More RCTs are necessary to further determine the real complication rate of this procedure.

Facial Fat Grafting (FFG): Worth the Risk? A Systematic Review of Complications and Critical Appraisal

Cherubino M.;
2022-01-01

Abstract

Introduction: Autologous fat is ideal soft tissue filler. It is easily accessible, biocompatible, cheap, and it provides both volume augmentation and skin quality improvement. Fat grafting has been used since 1893, but it has only gained widespread popularity since the development of modern liposuction by Colemann and Illouz in the 1980s. Every year more than half a million facial fat grafting procedures are carried out worldwide and the trend is rapidly increasing. Overall, general complications associated with facial fat grafting are assumed to be around 2%. Is that true? Material and Methods: Until July 2021, a systematic search of the literature was performed interrogating PubMed search engines. The following algorithm was used for the research: (fat graft OR lipofilling) AND face AND complications. Exclusion criteria applied hierarchically were review articles, not reporting recipient site complications; not in English and paediatric population. Abstracts were manually screened by LS, GS, JM and PDS separately and subsequently matched for accuracy. Pertinent full-text articles were retrieved and analysed and data were extracted from the database. The flow chart of article selection is described following the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) statement. Results: In total, 462 papers were identified by PubMed search. A total of 359 were excluded: 38 papers were not in English, 41 were review articles, 279 articles did not report recipient site complications and 1 was not on human subjects. Average complication rate ranged from 1.5% to 81.4%. A total of 298 adverse events were identified: 40 (13.4%) intravascular injections, 13 (4.3%) asymmetry, 57 (19.1%) irregularities, 22 (7.4%) graft hypertrophy, 21 (7%) fat necrosis, 73 (24.5%) prolonged oedema, 1 (0.3%) infection, 6 (2%) prolonged erythema, 15 (5%) telangiectasia and 50 (16.8%) cases of acne activation. Conclusions: FFG related side effects could be resumed in three categories: severe, moderate, and minor. Severe (13.4%) side effects such as intravascular injection or migration require neurological or neurosurgical management and often lead to permanent disability or death. Moderate (38.3%) side effects such as fat hypertrophy, necrosis, cyst formation, irregularities and asymmetries require a retouch operation. Minor (48.3%) side effects such as prolonged oedema or erythema require no surgical management. Despite the fact that the overall general complication rate of facial fat grafting is assumed to be around 2%, the real complication rate of facial fat grafting is unknown due to a lack of reporting and the absence of consensus on side effect definition and identification. More RCTs are necessary to further determine the real complication rate of this procedure.
2022
2022
facial fat grafting; fat transfer; lipofilling
Schiraldi, L.; Sapino, G.; Meuli, J.; Maruccia, M.; Cherubino, M.; Raffoul, W.; di Summa, P. G.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11383/2151134
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