The Real Truth about Liposuction, Fat Grafting, and Cellulite Treatment

What is the most effective way to treat cellulite?

Developing cellulite can often cause frustration for many people. Cellulite can appear on your buttocks, thighs, or other parts of your body. It can occur in people of any size, age, gender, and background. In this article, we cover how some of the most common plastic surgery procedures can be used as one of the most effective ways to treat cellulite.

How Liposuction and Fat Grafting can effectively treat Cellulite

Liposuction, cellulite removal, and fat grafting — are they the perfect trio for cellulite treatment? You may have seen dramatic body transformations where fat is removed with liposuction and redistributed, using fat grafting to smooth away areas of cellulite. But how effective is this complementary package that removes stubborn fat and smoothes away the appearance of cellulite all at the same time?

To find out, first, we need to understand what cellulite is and how it forms in the body.

Cellulite is Quite Common

Cellulite is extremely prevalent. In fact, close to 90% of all women have this type of dimpled skin somewhere on their body, most often on their thighs and butt. Conversely, only around one in ten men experience cellulite. Many women are frustrated with the stubbornness of cellulite. Some have tried anti-aging skin and cellulite-fighting creams without much success.

Cellulite is created by tight fibers or bands that travel through the connective tissue and fat that create dimples or divots. “The way I explain it to my patients is that the bands are like the stitching in a quilt or mattress that make dimples in the stuffing,” explains Dr. Cat. “It is genetic and has a lot to do with the inherent connective tissue. With less fat (less stuffing in the quilt) it is less obvious but even very thin and fit people have it. Therefore, external treatments like lasers, massage, or creams cannot treat cellulite – that would be like ironing or massaging or rubbing something on a quilt and making the quilting go away.”

What Is Cellulite?

Cellulite typically occurs on the hips, thighs, and butt. It’s more prevalent in women because of the unique distribution of muscle, fat cells, and connective tissue in a woman’s body. Cellulite isn’t always caused by the presence of excess body fat. It’s due to small deposits of fat that distort and press against the connective tissue under the skin. This is what causes the dimpled appearance of the skin.

how cellulites are formed

What Causes Cellulite?

The precise reason why this skin variation appears is unknown. But it can be related to some of the following factors:

  • Genetics
  • Reduced skin elasticity
  • Lack of collagen as we age
  • Excessive weight gain or loss
  • Sun damage
  • Hormone changes
  • Excessive fluid beneath the skin

Without a direct cause, it can be very difficult to prevent cellulite from appearing. But by maintaining a healthy weight through exercise and a nutritionally balanced diet, you may be able to reduce the appearance of cellulite. Bear in mind however that even though a healthy lifestyle may diminish the appearance of cellulite, it can’t change the structure of the skin.

Liposuction Alone Can’t Help Diminish Cellulite

Liposuction by itself can’t properly treat cellulite because it just removes fat from around those bands. Essentially like that image of the quilt, if you remove the stuffing from a quilt or mattress, you will still see the dimples.

Luckily, Dr. Cat offers a solution to your cellulite issues, which is the use of your own fat cells. Utilizing liposuction, fat cells are taken from other parts of the body and injected into the dimples and divots to reduce the appearance of cellulite. This type of procedure, while an effective cellulite treatment, cannot completely resolve or remove cellulite completely. Dr. Cat is always very transparent about this with her patients so they have realistic expectations.

What Is Fat Grafting?

Cellulite treatment surgeryFat grafting, which is also sometimes called fat injections or fat transfer, is a surgical procedure where fat is transferred from one part of the body to another. The goal is to augment or improve the portion of the body where the fat has been injected. By utilizing liposuction, the fat is extracted from a place in the body where there are undesired fat cells. These cells are processed in sterile containers where they are purified. They are then injected into the area of the body that needs to be augmented. Fat can essentially be transferred to any part of the body that is needed. 

One of the finer points about liposuction and fat grafting is that it uses the patient’s own fat cells for the procedure. This is vital to the success of this process. Instead of using something like a butt implant, Dr. Cat utilizes a patient’s own tissue to add volume, which eliminates any risk of rejection from the body.

“When I perform liposuction with fat grafting, I cut some of the bands in the deepest cellulite dents to smooth the appearance of the dents,” explains Dr. Cat. “But you cannot cut all of them because those bands provide structural support for the tissues. After this, I fill the dents with fat. I’ve shown how this can improve the appearance of cellulite, but even with this technique, there is still some memory in the tissues so you cannot get it completely smooth.” She adds that it’s also important to know that sometimes the bands of cellulite reattach.

While cellulite treatment with liposuction and fat grafting may not be a 100% cellulite cure-all, it does offer one of the more effective methods for battling this stubborn skin texture.

Cellulite Treatment with Fat Transfer Facts

No Fear of Rejection

Liposuction is a procedure where unwanted fat cells are removed from an area through a small suction tube. When this is combined with fat grafting, the fat is purified and repurposed into areas where fat is needed like in the divots and lumpy skin on the thighs. Because your own tissue is being utilized there’s no fear of rejection like there is with implant devices.


Liposuction and fat grafting will require local anesthesia for small areas and general anesthesia for larger ones. This all depends on the size of the area of the body being augmented. Overall it just makes for a more relaxed and pleasant experience for the patient.

Not All Fat Cells Are Sustained

During the procedure, a certain number of fat cells won’t last. Some will reabsorb during the fat transfer process. This is because there are two kinds of receptors on fat cells: Alpha and Beta. They both play an important role. The alpha receptors cause fat cells to stay in place, while beta receptors tell fat cells to break down to provide fuel for energy. To manage this, Dr. Cat will harvest fat cells that are more likely to yield lasting results.

Liposuction in Beverly Hills is An Outpatient Procedure

Even though anesthesia is being used, liposuction and fat grafting are treated as outpatient procedures at Dr. Cat’s Beverly Hills surgical facility. To be on the safe side you will need to have someone pick you up and drive you home. You will be wide awake and coherent but it’s best to have transportation in place once your procedure has been completed. Preparation is always important, and knowing the best ways to prepare for liposuction surgery will help ensure your procedure goes as smoothly as possible.

Minimal Scarring

In most cases of cosmetic surgery, many patients have the fear of potential scarring. This is normal but with liposuction and fat grafting there is very little scarring at all since the incision and injection holes are small. Most patients only experience a tiny bit of scarring at the injection and removal sites. Dr. Cat is a meticulous surgeon known for her special incision closure technique, which produces nearly invisible scars. She also makes sure incisions are placed in the least visible areas possible.

What to Expect After Your Liposuction Fat Grafting Cellulite Treatment

Cellulite fat grafting recovery is quick and virtually painless with Dr. Cat’s gentle technique. Patients may experience some swelling, soreness, and bruising but it will be very minimal. These may appear at the injection and removal areas and this is completely normal. Your body is simply healing after the procedure.

How long will your results remain?

The way Dr. Cat describes maintaining liposuction results to her patients is “if you continue to diet and exercise after surgery – each fat cell will get smaller so you will get an even better result in the areas you’ve had liposuction.”

There’s no guarantee how long or how much the cellulite will improve after this treatment, but the appearance of lumpy skin or dimpling will improve after you have fully healed. It all depends on how extensive the cellulite is on the body.

Your Cellulite Liposuction Expert in Los Angeles

Dr. Cat also specializes in revision surgery. If a patient has had liposuction that was performed too aggressively by another physician, she can help smooth bumps or irregularities to correct and get you closer to the body you had been wanting when you first began your treatments. 

Understanding Your Investment

Cosmetic surgery typically isn’t covered by most healthcare insurance. The cost of liposuction and fat grafting depends on several factors. The number of areas of liposuction, the areas of fat is being transferred, and the duration of the surgery.

If performed correctly and meticulously, liposuction and fat grafting aren’t procedures that typically need upkeep. If patients maintain a stable weight and a healthy lifestyle after surgery, results should be long-lasting. Think of it more as an investment in yourself rather than a cosmetic expense.

A Work of Art: Liposuction in Los Angeles

cellulite treatment in Beverly hillsFor a procedure like this, you need not only a skilled surgeon but also someone with a trained artistic eye. Luckily, Dr. Cat combines both artistry and experience. When it comes to treating cellulite with liposuction and fat grafting, two things come into play. Dr. Cat will perform liposuction to remove fat from your unwanted areas and place it into the areas that you desire. Any hollow or flat areas that lack volume or have divots will now be smooth and supple. You’ll achieve the look you’ve always dreamed you could have.

If you’d like to learn more about liposuction and fat grafting to help with the appearance of cellulite, reach out to Dr. Cat today. She can answer any questions or concerns you may have about liposuction and fat grafting or any cosmetic procedure. A world-renowned surgeon and a Harvard and UCLA graduate, patients continuously fly into Beverly Hills to seek out her talents. Dr. Cat created MD GLAM and has been featured on Dr. 90210 on the E! network. She’s a wife and mother and is committed to the empowerment of women not only in Los Angeles but globally. Give her office a call at 310-858-8808 or visit her click here to schedule a consultation.