Stem cell-enriched fat grafting
Dr Kai-Uwe Schlaudraff is the first plastic surgeon to have offered stem cell-enriched fat grafting in Switzerland. He has collaborated in the development of this technique and therefore has the experience and expertise required to treat his patients successfully. He is a member of the scientific board of the Swiss Stem Cell Foundation and is Governor of the International Aesthetic Stem Cell Society. In a normal graft, when fat is transplanted, the creation of a new blood supply is essential in order to provide the oxygen and nutrients necessary for its survival. Without this blood supply, the transplanted fat cells die, and the volume is lost. In aesthetic surgery, stem cell-enriched fat grafting improves the conventional fat graft through a technology originally developed by Cytori Therapeutics. Fatty or adipose tissue contains high concentrations of stem cells, called regenerative cells. These facilitate healing and are essential for the creation of the blood flow. By combining purified fat cells, stem cells and regenerative cells (derived from adipose tissue), forming a cell-enriched fat graft, the survival of the transplanted fat is achieved even under difficult conditions. The fat integrates into the patient’s body, regenerating or increasing the volume of soft tissue, and ultimately functions as a normal fat tissue in the body.
Consultation and procedure
During your consultation, Dr Schlaudraff will ask you to describe the improvements you hope to obtain for your figure and your expectations regarding the lipostructure of the body. He will then carry out a thorough physical examination and careful assessment of the quality of your skin, fatty tissue and underlying muscles to determine whether you are a candidate for a fat graft or stem cell-enriched graft (healthy body weight, regular exercise, balanced diet, etc.). With this information, Dr Schlaudraff will work with you to create a customised plan that will allow you to reach your personal goals by recommending possible complementary treatments or alternatives to lipofilling.
Dr Schlaudraff carries out cell-enriched fat grafting under general or local anaesthesia in Concept Clinic’s state-of-the-art operating centre, which meets with the highest standards of comfort, safety and hygiene. The lipofilling procedure is preceded by ultrasound-assisted liposuction to effectively and gently remove the excess fatty tissue. Dr Schlaudraff will then use VASER® Hi Def liposuction to sculpt and redefine the targeted areas. The removed fatty tissue will then be divided into two samples:
- One sample will be processed by a specific machine, the Cytori Celution®, to extract the stem cells and the regenerative cells from the adipose tissue.
- The other will be purified, cleaned of all cell fragments and other impurities which will produce a viable fat cell sample.
The highly concentrated stem cell and regenerating cell sample will then be combined with the purified fat, thereby creating the cell-enriched fat graft. Dr Schlaudraff will then inject it into the desired area(s) of the body. Lipostructure can last between one and four hours, depending on the quantity and complexity of the areas to be treated. It should be noted that this method does not apply to breasts for which this fat treatment technique is not suitable.
In collaboration with SSCF, Dr Schlaudraff also offers the storage (GMP) of your stem cells of adipose origin for future therapeutic purposes, for example, to treat osteoarthritis of the knee or the shoulder, and for many other indications.
Results and recovery
After lipofilling, the patients may suffer from some bruises, swelling and pain in the treated areas. These sensations will dissipate after about one to two weeks after the operation. You will be able to resume light activities a few days after the procedure, and return to normal activity within five to ten days thereafter. Improved areas will be totally natural, both to the eye and to the touch. The transferred fat will integrate into the surrounding fat, creating the shape and volume you want to give your body, without the use of foreign substances and risk of rejection.
Complementary procedures to body lipofilling
Stem cell-enriched fat grafting is also used for facial restorative or aesthetic surgery to correct the many signs of ageing or scarring. It makes it possible to reshape the natural curve and to increase the volume for example of the cheekbones, the chin, the contour of the eyes and many other parts of the face. The beneficial effects of a stem cell-enriched fat graft are scientifically proven and include improved elasticity and skin thickness, as well as a reduction in pigment disorders.
Injections of fat to the hands can complement a lipofilling of the face.