Fat transplantation is among the most innovative treatments for facial rejuvenation, breast reconstruction and soft tissue augmentation, and makes use of stem cells to assist with the tissue augmentation process. Japanese cosmetic surgeons have been testing this transfer procedure for several years, and many cosmetic surgeons around the country have been able to perform successful procedures without incisional scars or complications associated with injecting foreign materials into the skin.
Cell-assisted lipotransfer is now used to perform a number of plastic and cosmetic surgery procedures around the world, and is now undergoing several tests and trials to overcome many of the problems associated with lipoinjections and conventional fat transfer procedures. Dr. Kotaro Yoshimura, M.D., associate professor of the department of plastic surgery in the University of Tokyo is one of the leading investigators in stem cell research and in the usage of stem cells aesthetic applications.
When conducting the cell-assisted lipotransfer procedure (CAL), the adipose-dervied stem cells are used in combination with lipoinjections to build new tissue. In this procedure, the stromal vascular fraction (SVF) containing the autologous adipose-derived stem cells is freshly isolated from half of the aspirated fat and recombined with the other half.
The procedure involves a three-step process that begins with extracting fat from the donor site, purifying it and then re-injecting it into the skin tissues. Dr. Yoshimura uses a manual isolation process to extract the stem cells and prepare them for reinjection. He states, “Our results are pretty encouraging. We can use it for breast implant replacement as well as breast reconstruction. Facial reconstruction for inborn or acquired diseases are also good indications.”
Dr. Yoshimura has successfully executed over 450 breast augmentation procedures and breast reconstruction procedures using the CAL technique since 2003, and has deemed it a safe and effective procedure for tissue augmentation.