Liposuction, also called lipoplasty or suction-assisted lipectomy, removes deposits of excess fat from specific areas of your body or from your face and neck.
Am I a Good Candidate for this procedure?
You may be a good candidate for liposuction if you have localized excess fat or desire contouring in any of the following areas:
Checks, jowls, and neck
Abdomen and waist
Inner and outer thigh
Liposuction may sometimes be used to treat a condition called gynecomastia, or male breast enlargement, which frequently occurs among both teenage and adult males.
Liposuction should not be considered a substitute for overall weight loss nor is it an effective treatment for cellulite, a condition that gives the skin an uneven, dimpled appearance.
Liposuction can be performed on several areas of the body at the same time, and it can also be done in conjunction with another surgery.
Liposuction is particularly well suited for women and men who are of relatively normal weight but have isolated pockets of fat that cause certain areas of their body to appear disproportionate. These localized fat deposits may sometimes be an inherited trait and typically do not respond to dieting of exercise. Liposuction is often the only way to eliminate them.
While it is possible to undergo liposuction at almost any age, you will obtain the best results if your skin still has enough elasticity to achieve a smooth contour following fat removal. When skin is inelastic, as in some older patients, it may not redrape well and a tightening procedure may be necessary.
Your Personal Consultation
Because of individual physical factors, not everyone will achieve the same results from liposuction. Your plastic surgeon will take into consideration your unique characteristics in determining the most effective treatment. During the consultation, you will be asked to point out the exact areas, which you would like to see improved.
How is Liposuction Performed?
Fat is removed by first inserting a small, hollow tube, called a cannula, through one or more tiny incisions near the area to be suctioned. Incisions are usually less than one quarter inch in length and are placed as inconspicuously as possible, often within skin folds or contour lines. The cannula is connected by tubing to a vacuum pressure unit. Guided by the surgeon, the suction device literally vacuums away the unwanted fat.
How will I Look and Feel Initially?
It is important to realize that the amount of time it takes for recovery varies greatly among individuals.
The day after surgery, you will need to move around a bit to promote blood circulation. Your dressings will be removed within several days so that your plastic surgeon can examine the treated areas. You will notice swelling and bruising, which is to be expected. You will have a compression garment to reduce swelling that is to be worn for several weeks. There may also be numbness in some areas, and it may take several weeks before feeling returns.
You may be able to return to work in just a few days. In many instances, you can resume most of your normal activities within one or two weeks and begin some form of exercise soon after.
Liposuction surgery will reduce those areas of fatty deposits that previously created unflattering bulges and perhaps made it difficult to feel comfortable in your clothing. Factors such as fluid retention following surgery and prolonged swelling may delay the appearance of your new, slimmer contour. The healing process is gradual, so you should expect to wait a while before fully enjoying the results of your liposuction.