One of the distinguishing skills that you will find at Sadove Plastic Surgery is Dr Sadove’s unique experience with subcision and fat Stem cell grafting. Few physicians in the world have the experience and skill to offer this treatment to those who suffer so severely from the ravages of depressed rolling scars.
Fat stem cell grafting is also known as fat injection or fat transfer. The reason it involves stem cells is because the body fat is rich with stem cells in our body fat. These cells are attached to fat cells in our body. When fat is taken from one area of the body and moved to another, the cells are able to survive and grow in the new location. This is critical for acne scar patients because the reason they have “depressed” scars is because the fat and lower dermis were lost when there was active infection. The depressions are reversed by releasing the scar under the skin with a technique called subcision. Here a special long thin cutting instrument is used to cut or release the scar so that it may rise to the level of surrounding skin. In order to keep it there a filler is required to hold it up. In order to do this there is nothing better than a patient’s own fat and stem cells
Only injection treatments which deal with the fundamental loss of thickness of the dermis and underlying fat will raise the skin to the level of the surrounding skin.
While injectable fillers may be used successfully, they are best reserved for smaller areas of acne scar. Often the large size of the affected area, and their temporary nature, make “off the shelf” fillers an unappealing financial option. If many syringes of a filler are required, it also makes more sense to use the patient’s own fat. On the other hand, much more work is involved when auto fat is used.
Fat/Stem Cell Grafting process
Fat/Stem Cell transfer involves three main steps:
- Liposuction – extraction of a small amount of adipose fat from the donor area- usually the side of the lower abdomen
- Processing or purification – decanting and processing of the extracted fat/Stem Cells. Often a blood sample is removed at the same time, processed, and the PRP or platelet rich plasma mixed with the cells prior to re injection.
- Fat/Stem Cell Grafting – Grafting or re-injection of the purified/processed fat/Stem Cells into the recipient area that needs to be improved or treated.
The procedure involves extraction of adipose fat by liposuction technique followed by fat processing for purification and then transfer or re-injection of purified fat and stem cells into the area that needs augmentation or improvement. This is very different from the “stem cell” techniques marketed so aggressively in the media for nearly every conceivable ailment.
Most of the stem cells you hear about in marketing come from the umbilical cord of a woman after birth of a baby. The blood is harvested and sold as stem cells. It is often not even clear that any of these cells are even alive after delivery by an express mail service. The Stem Cells we are talking about here are mixed with your fat cells and come from you minutes before they are placed into the scar area of your face.
There are soft rolling scars that can be improved with “off the shelf” filler injectable products. However, if injection is not successful in raising the scar, subcision should be performed. Rolling scars have smooth, sloping borders, and there are commercial products capable of producing positive results. In softer scars, they are able to push the depressed skin up to the level of surrounding skin. In such cases, fillers become a desirable option.