FIRST USE OF STEREOLOGY TO QUANTIFY THE SURVIVAL OF FAT AUTOGRAFTS

Eduardo Serna Cuéllar, Luis Santamaría Solís

Abstract

It is not usual to perform quantitative analyses on surgical materials. Rather, they are evaluated clinically, through qualitative methods, and if quantitation is done, it is on a 2-dimensional basis. In this study, the long-term survival of fat autografts (FAG) in 40 subjects with facial soft tissue defects is quantified. An adipose tissue preparation from the abdomen obtained through liposuction and centrifugation is injected subcutaneously. Approximately 14 months later, the treated area is biopsied. Extensive computer-based histological analyses were performed using the stereological method in order to directly obtain three parameters: volume fraction of adipocytes in the fat tissue (VV), density (number per volume) of adipocytes in the fat tissue (NV), and the mean cell volume of adipocytes (VA) in each tissue sample. A set of equations based on these three quantitative parameters is produced for evaluation of the volumetric survival fraction (VSF) of FAG. The presented data evidenced a 66% survival fraction at the 14-month follow-up. In routine practice, it would be sufficient to perform this volumetric analysis on the injected and biopsied fat samples to know what fraction of the FAG has survived. This is an objective method for quantifying FAG survival and will allow a standardized comparison between different research series and authors.

Keywords
facial defects; fat autografts; quantitation; stereology; survival

Full Text:

PDF


DOI: 10.5566/ias.v24.p187-193

Image Analysis & Stereology
EISSN 1854-5165 (Electronic version)
ISSN 1580-3139 (Printed version)