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Dr Sydney Coleman Joins Surgical Team to Treat Facial War Injuries with Fat Grafting

Posted November 19, 2009 in Facial Reconstruction, Home

The Department of Defense just awarded a $1.6 million grant to help soldiers recover from devastating facial injuries using innovative surgical technologies based on the biology of fat tissue. Peter Rubin a noted scientist and plastic surgeon, will head up a surgical team that will use the fat grafting techniques developed by Sydney Coleman to reconstruct 20 American veterans.

In a news article released on Veteran’s day last week, Dr. Rubin noted that to counteract certain basic biological challenges the surgical “team will use techniques and innovative equipment developed by Dr. Sydney Coleman, a New York plastic surgeon who will be part of the research group.”  The news article goes on to say, “Dr. Coleman has developed a centrifuge …that concentrates the fat…and raises the proportion of stem cells…that can help the fat tissue grow new blood vessels. Dr. Coleman has developed special surgical tools for facial reconstruction work, Dr. Rubin said, particularly tiny tubes called cannulas…that can be used to implant the fat cells beneath the facial skin.”

Oblique view further demonstrates the extent of missing bone and muscle.
Dr. Sydney Coleman used three sessions of fat grafting to reconstruct the missing portion of this man’s face. Similar techniques will be used to reconstruct the war casualties

“As many as 26 percent of wounded soldiers suffer some kind of facial injury, which can have a huge impact on quality of life,” said Dr. Rubin in a recent press release. “While we can reconstruct bony structures very well, it is the surrounding soft tissues that give people a recognizable face. This project will investigate how soft tissue grafting can more precisely restore facial form and improve the lives of our wounded soldiers.”

The use of fat grafting for serious facial injuries, such as those resulting from roadside bombs is facilitated in this project by using specially designed devices and instruments for harvesting fat tissue and implanting it into regions of scarred tissue.

“Fat grafting, or moving fat tissue from one part of the body to another, has been used as a cosmetic procedure for decades,” said Dr. Rubin. “We are now applying these same techniques for reconstructive surgery to accurately restore facial form after battlefield injuries.”

© Coleman 2009

More examples of reconstruction using Dr. Coleman’s specific technique can be found at

Further reading:

Restoration of Missing Facial Tissue Important Alternative to Traditional Surgeries

The treatment of face and neck scars with structural fat grafting

Dr. Sydney Coleman presents LipoStructure to maxillofacial and craniofacial surgeons

Fat Injection: From Filling to Regeneration

In Dr. Coleman’s book Structural Fat Grafting

In Chapters 17 & 18 of Dr. Coleman’s book Fat Injection: From Filling to Regeneration

Treatment of the aging hand with LipoStructure

NY Times shows photos of progressive improvement in skin quality with Coleman Fat Grafting

Coleman Structural Fat Grafting to the Nose