What is Liposuction?
Liposuction is a cosmetic procedure that removes fat that you can’t seem to get rid of through diet and exercise. A plastic or dermatologic surgeon usually does the procedure on your hips, belly, thighs, buttocks, back, arms, or face to improve their shape. But liposuction can also be done with other plastic surgeries, including facelifts, breast reductions, and tummy tucks. Suction Assisted Liposuction: this technique uses a vacuum like device to help remove the fat. Power Assisted Liposuction is a similar technique that involves a tool that enhances the motion of the cannula used to remove the fat.
- Adults within 30% of their ideal weight who have firm, elastic skin and good muscle tone
- Healthy individuals who do not have a life-threatening illness or medical conditions that can impair healing
- Individuals with a positive outlook and specific goals in mind for body contouring
If you are bothered by excess fat deposits located anywhere on your body that don’t respond to diet or exercise, liposuction may be right for you.
When performed by a qualified cosmetic surgeon, liposuction is a safe procedure and an excellent way to improve the shape of your body. The best way to decide if liposuction is right for you is to consult with a board certified cosmetic surgeon. You can find cosmetic surgeons in your area.
Your cosmetic surgeon will make one or more small incisions near the treatment area. A cannula, or thin tube, is inserted through these incisions to loosen excess fat beneath the skin. Then, the fat is suctioned out. The entire procedure can take under an hour or up to 3 hours or longer, depending on the number of areas treated.
Today’s advanced liposuction techniques are designed to minimize swelling, trauma and discomfort, and when the procedure is performed by a qualified cosmetic surgeon, recovery from liposuction can be remarkably quick. Many patients return to work just a few days after their procedures, depending on the physical requirements of their jobs and the extent of their procedures. While your cosmetic surgeon can prescribe pain medication, most patients find over the counter options more than enough to manage any post-operative soreness.
With proper care, scars should fade significantly over the months following surgery; in many cases, scars are barely visible after a year or so.
The fat cells are removed permanently during liposuction. But you can gain weight back, with new fat cells, which usually go to different areas of your body.
Liposuction removes fat cells from your body, and these fat cells will not grow back. However, it is important to maintain a stable weight to ensure that your new look remains optimal. If you gain a significant amount of weight in the future, your overall appearance is likely to change as your body stores excess fat in other locations.
Things to Do:
You’ll want to have realistic expectations. Liposuction won’t get rid of cellulite, so if you hoped you’d come out of surgery without any, you’re out of luck.
Your cosmetic surgeon may give you a compression garment to wear for a few weeks following surgery. This helps to minimize swelling and encourage optimal skin contraction.
To keep your new shape after surgery, follow a diet that includes lots of lean protein, fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat dairy. And exercise regularly.
- Complications from anesthesia
- Shock (usually from not getting enough fluid during surgery)
- Fluid accumulation (pockets of fluid forming under the skin)
- Infections (strep, staph)
- Fat embolism (when tiny pieces of fat break away and block blood flow)
- Burns from instruments
- Uneven fat removal
- Reactions to lidocaine
- Change in skin sensation; numbness
- Damage to nerves, blood vessels, muscles, lungs, and abdominal organs
- Another risk is a blood clot in your deep veins. Clots can be very dangerous if they travel to other parts of your body, such as your lungs