Autologous fat transfer promising for scar conditions, fibrosis

08 Nov 2020

Autologous fat transfer (AFT) holds good potential for the treatment of fibrosis and scar-related problems, reports a recent meta-analysis.

From the databases of PubMed, Embase, and the Cochrane Library, the researchers retrieved 45 studies, corresponding to 3,033 unique patients. Twenty-four of the included studies used AFT for treating scars due to trauma or previous surgery, while in seven, AFT was used to treat burns. In another six studies, fibrosis and tissue damage due to irradiation were the lesions under treatment.

Both patients and plastic surgeons were pleased with the procedure, yielding satisfaction rates of 89.3 percent and 90.4 percent, respectively.

In addition, AFT led to significant improvements in scores in the Patient and Observer Scar Assessment Scale (POSAS; score change, 1.8 points; 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 1.5–2.2), as assessed by patients. This was true for all POSAS subdomains, except for itch. Scar stiffness (2.9 points), colour (2.3 points), and irregularity (2.0 points) were the subcategories that saw the greatest change due to AFT.

In the observer module of POSAS, which was based on the evaluation of the plastic surgeon, the improvement was much lower, but nevertheless significant (score change, 1.1 points, 95 percent CI, 0.8–1.4; p=0.002).

The researchers likewise saw that AFT led to significant recovery of radiotherapy-induced tissue damage and function. The procedure was also relatively safe, with a minor complication incidence rate of only 4.8 percent.

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