Background: Parry-Romberg disease is a rare condition that results in progressive hemifacial atrophy, involving the skin, dermis, subcutaneous fat, muscle, and, finally, cartilage and bone. Patients have been treated with dermofat or fat grafts or by microvascular free flap transfer. We hypothesized that adipose-derived stem cells (ASCs) may improve the results of microfat grafting through enhancing angiogenesis. We evaluated the utility of ASC in microfat grafting of patients with Parry-Romberg disease by measuring the change in the hemifacial volumes after injection of ASCs with microfat grafts or microfat grafts alone.
Methods: In April 2008, this investigation was approved by the Korean Food and Drug Administration and the institutional review board of the Asan Medical Center (Seoul, Korea) that monitor investigator-initiated trials. Between May 2008 and January 2009, 10 volunteers with Parry-Romberg disease (5 men and 5 women; mean age, 28 y) were recruited; 5 received ASC and microfat grafts and 5 received microfat grafts only. The mean follow-up period was 15 months. Adipose-derived stem cells were obtained from abdominal fat by liposuction and were cultured for 2 weeks. On day 14, patients were injected with fat grafts alone or plus (in the test group) 1 × 10 ASCs. Patients were evaluated postoperatively using a 3-dimensional camera and 3-dimensional CT scans, and grafted fat volumes were objectively calculated.
Results: Successful outcomes were evident in all 5 patients receiving microfat grafts and ASCs, and the survival of grafted fat was better than in patients receiving microfat grafts alone. Before surgery, the mean difference between ipsilateral and contralateral hemiface volume in patients receiving microfat grafts and ASCs was 21.71 mL decreasing to 4.47 mL after surgery. Overall resorption in this ASC group was 20.59%. The mean preoperative difference in hemiface volume in those receiving microfat grafts alone was 8.32 mL decreasing to 3.89 mL after surgery. Overall resorption in this group was 46.81%. The preoperative and postoperative volume differences between the groups was statistically significant (P = 0.002; random-effects model [SAS 9.1]).
Conclusions: Adipose-derived stem cells enhance the survival of fat grafted into the face. A microfat graft with simultaneous ASC injection may be used to treat Parry-Romberg disease without the need for microvascular free flap transfer.