The Stromal Vascular Fraction Improves Maintenance of the Fat Graft Volume: A Systematic Review

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Abstract

Background and Objectives

With the continued application of fat grafting in plastic surgery, many studies have focused on various factors to improve maintenance of the fat graft volume, such as platelet-rich plasma, adipose-derived stromal/stem cells, and the stromal vascular fraction (SVF). In addition, many review articles have investigated the functions of platelet-rich plasma and adipose-derived stromal/stem cells in fat grafting, although the usefulness of the SVF remains unclear. The aim of the present review was to determine whether SVF use could maintain a fat graft.

Methods

A systematic review was conducted of the PubMed, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, and Embase databases of original articles published up to February 2018.

Results

Relevant articles were identified by screening the abstracts. A total of 58 full texts were initially identified. After exclusion, 17 articles, including 6 animal studies and 11 clinical studies, were included for analysis.

Conclusions

Most studies found a significant and measurable long-term effect of SVF-enhanced fat grafting on breast augmentation and defects, wound healing, scaring, and facial aesthetic outcomes. Stromal vascular fraction use did not result in a higher instance of complications and, thus, can be considered a safe option for fat grafting.

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