This procedure falls into the realm of liposculpture. It calls for a degree of artistry on the part of the surgeon who is going to remove relatively small quantities of fat from specific areas of the face and may use the removed fat to reinsert it at other areas to build up depressions, such as deep naso-labial folds.
Typically the patients are relatively young, of either sex, and have specific areas they wish corrected, rather than a generalized facial problem. These specific areas may be residual fat masses after a program of weight reduction. The most common areas treated are the jowls, under the jaw line (“double chin”), and the cheeks.
Because of the highly specific and relatively small quantity of fat to be removed, the smallest of available catheters are used, generally about 1mm diameter. The incision is made no larger than will accommodate the catheter, and the least visible points are chosen, for instance, under the jaw line or through the mouth.
To facilitate removal of the fat, it may be infiltrated with fluid, often local anesthetic with some epinephrine to reduce bleeding, a variant of liposuction known as tumescent. Another variation of liposuction is with the laser to assist in liquefication and easier extraction. It is not merely the fat that is removed, but also the cell that contains the fat, so in theory the fatty area should not return once it has been removed (in theory!).
A single suture is often adequate to close the wound. Pressure dressings might be considered appropriate to control the pocket from which the fat was aspirated.