Body Procedures » Fat Transfer for Hand Rejuvenation

Fat transfer a.k.a. lipostructure to the hand by Seattle plastic surgeon

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Hand Rejuvenation according to Seattle Cosmetic Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Lisa Lynn Sowder

Our hands are only second to our face in their exposure for all to see. They also really take a beating from the sun (even in rainy Seattle), dishwater, surgical scrubbing, changing the oil, cold, wind; you name it.

Fat Transfer to Hands

In addition to having the skin punished over the years, in middle age the hands tend to lose fat and become more bony. Add some joint thickening from arthritis and you have some ancient looking meat hooks. So you can take great care of yourself, have a little surgical help with the inevitable sags and bags, become a gym rat and yikes(!) those hands can give it all away.

Quick facts:

  • Costs:  About $5500 – $6000 depending on where I “havest” the fat and how long the procedure takes.
  • How much it hurts:  Not much.
  • Time off of work:  About a week.
  • Time until driving again:  3 – 4 days or until you are off of narcotic pain medication.
  • Time off the gym: 2 – 3 weeks.
  • Time off the slopes: usually 3 weeks.
  • Time off the climbing wall: usually 4 weeks.
  • How long it lasts:  probably forever.
  • Patient satisfaction:  Very high.  It works well, doesn’t hurt very much and the recovery is usually surprisingly easy. 

I have found that fat transfer to the hands is a wonderful way to rejuvenate this fashion accessory. The fat plumps up the hands, softens the outlines of tendons and bones and makes the skin appear smoother. I take fat from an area where it is unappreciated (usually the waist or flanks), refine it and then inject it into the layer just beneath the skin of the hands. Even the slimmest of patients will have enough fat available for hand rejuvenation.

I tape the surface of the hands for about a week and ask my patients to keep their hands elevated for about 24 hours after surgery and then rest them as much as possible for about a week.

Check out this blog on this topic.