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Aesthet Surg J. 2012 Jul;32(5):622-33. doi: 10.1177/1090820X12448794.

The effect of hyaluronan hydrogel on fat graft survival.

Author information

1
Department of Plastic Surgery at the Cleveland Clinic, Ohio, USA. mo.alghoul@gmail.com

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Autologous fat transplantation is a common technique for soft tissue augmentation in aesthetic and reconstructive surgery; however, the degree of fat graft take can be unpredictable. Hyaluronan has been shown to be a promising cell carrier in adipose tissue engineering.

OBJECTIVES:

The authors investigate the effect of a hyaluronan hydrogel on fat graft survival, angiogenesis, and volume maintenance in a rat model.

METHODS:

Fat was harvested from the groins of 27 rats, processed, and injected beneath the animals' dorsums to form 2 grafts: 1 containing fat alone and 1 containing fat and hyaluronan hydrogel in a 1:1 mix (fat-HA). The grafts were scanned in vivo under high-resolution computed tomography at baseline and prior to euthanasia at 4, 12, and 20 weeks to measure total fat-HA graft volume as well as the volume of the fat component alone. Histological studies were performed after sacrifice to evaluate fat necrosis and blood vessel density.

RESULTS:

All grafts were clinically viable. Overall, fat necrosis was significantly reduced in the fat-HA grafts compared with the grafts containing fat alone (P < .001). This difference was most profound at 4 weeks (P = .008) but did not reach statistical significance at 12 and 20 weeks. At 12 weeks, blood vessel density in the fat-HA grafts was significantly greater than in the grafts containing fat alone (P = .016), but this did not reach statistical significance at 4 or 20 weeks. At 20 weeks, the fat component of the fat-HA graft had significantly less volume loss than the fat-alone graft (P = .008).

CONCLUSIONS:

When mixed with fat, hyaluronan hydrogel can improve early fat graft survival and may enhance vascularity and prolong volume maintenance.

PMID:
22745452
DOI:
10.1177/1090820X12448794
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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