Systematic review of the therapeutic roles of adipose tissue in dermatology

Frances M. Walocko, Ariel E. Eber, Robert S. Kirsner, Evangelos Badiavas, Keyvan Nouri

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Background: Adipose tissue has classically functioned as a filler in restoring facial volume. Adipose tissue is also rich in stem cells, which may have a role in regenerative medicine. Objective: To summarize the literature on the clinical uses of adipose tissue in scarring, wound healing, and hair growth and determine whether evidence exists for changes in clinical practice in dermatology. Methods: We utilized the Preferred Reporting Items for Systemic Reviews and Meta-Analyses to conduct the review. The PubMed search engine was used to assess the available literature on adipose tissue in scarring, wound healing, and hair growth. Results: A total of 13 studies matched our inclusion criteria; 6 of the 7 studies on scar treatment, all 3 studies on wound healing, and all 3 studies on hair growth demonstrated improved outcomes with adipose tissue treatments. Limitations: The literature supporting the use of adipose tissue is limited to case series, cohort studies, and small randomized controlled trials, which have an overall low level of evidence. Conclusion: The existing evidence for adipose tissue as a treatment option in scarring, wound healing, and hair growth is not strong enough to justify changes to current clinical practice. The literature does provide evidence for future large randomized clinical trials.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)935-944
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Dermatology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 2018


  • adipose tissue
  • adipose-derived stem cells
  • facial rejuvenation
  • fat grafting
  • fillers
  • hair growth
  • lipotransfer
  • scars
  • tissue engineering
  • wound healing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology


Dive into the research topics of 'Systematic review of the therapeutic roles of adipose tissue in dermatology'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this