Minimally-invasive autologous fat injection of the head and neck region can be considered a valid alternative to major invasive surgical procedures both for aesthetic and functional purposes. The favourable outcomes of autologous fat injection in otolaryngological practice are due to the filling of soft tissue and, mainly, to the potential regenerative effect of adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells. Herewith, some important biological preliminary remarks are described underlying the potential of autologous fat injection in regenerative medicine, and personal experience in using it for both consolidated clinical applications, such as fat grafting to the face and vocal fold augmentation in the treatment of glottic incompetence, and more recent applications including the treatment of post-parotidectomy Frey syndrome and velopharyngeal insufficiency.
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