Lipogems is an in office or outpatient procedure where the patient's own fat is prepared by mechanical breakdown into smaller pieces and subsequent removal of contaminants followed by application to an area in need of regenerative or anti-inflammatory treatment.
The Lipogems procedure is usually done in a treatment room or operating room with a small liposuction. The fat is then washed and mechanically broken down. What is obtained is called the Stromal Vascular Fraction (SVF) a heterogeneous population of different types of cells including adipocytes, mesenchymal progenitor cells, preadipocytes, endothelial cells, T cells, and macrophages the objective of the procedure is to introduce this population of highly potent cells and to facilitate their activation. The indication for this treatment in orthopedic surgery is in the treatment of knee osteoarthritis, areas of challenged tendon or ligament healing, as well as in the treatment of dysvascular wounds.
Patients and physicians must be aware that the Lipogems product may respond differently based on the patient, anatomical location, and the health of that location. Most of the research on SVF is currently in noncontrolled trials and in animal studies. The advantage of the procedure is that it is autogenous, meaning that it is from the patient's own body. The disadvantages are the cost and the need for a small liposuction procedure.