Locate providers:   

Space Lift: The Fat Transfer 3-Dimensional Face Lift


New advances in fat processing give physicians a chance to transfer fat for 3-dimensional lifting.

Fat transfer procedures have increasingly improved in popularity as patients become more aware of this option. One of the newest alternatives in fat grafting is stem cell fat transfer, and many patients are turning to this choice for a non-surgical face lift that provides great improvement with little to no downtime.

Dr. Mark Berman, President of the American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery (AACS), performs this procedure which he has dubbed the Stem Cell Space Lift. He says this procedure is older than many in the public are aware. "We've been doing this since 1986 and steadily making improvements. What is absolutely amazing about the whole thing is the idea that fat is loaded with stem cells." Dr. Berman says that fat has nearly 25 times the amount of stem cells than bone marrow for example, and therefore is a rich source of these amazingly adaptable cells.

stem cell facelift before and after photos
Actual results of Space Lift by Dr. Mark Berman

In Dr. Berman's Space Lift, fat is removed through a closed system in a syringe harvest technique, meaning that fat is simply suctioned into the syringe rather than performing a traditional liposuction procedure. The fat cells remain more viable with this method, an important factor in the procedure's success. The fat is then treated to remove all impurities and it is then injected into the patient's face for a filling effect that typically offers great results on its own.

One surprising benefit reported by many patients is an improvement in the skin quality. Dr. Berman believes that the stem cells found in fat may be at least partly responsible for this improvement. "We know that stem cells are the key to revascularization because those are angiogenic cells that will cause blood vessels to form." The formation of new blood vessels provides a life-giving supply of blood to the injected fat, keeping it alive so that fewer of the injected cells die and are flushed out of the body.
spacelift before and after photos
Actual results of Space Lift by Dr. Mark Berman

Dr. Berman describes the procedure as a 3 dimensional facelift. In traditional facelift, the skin is lifted and pulled back, bringing it closer to the skeleton. He says this alone often doesn't provide the improvement patients are looking for since a fuller face is a younger looking face. "The problem with face lifting is you lift the skin up, pull it back and the anterior dimension - this dimension which you want to increase - actually gets closer to the bone.... We're lifting the skin out and away from the skeleton."