What is Liposuction?
Despite appropriate diet and exercise, there are frequently areas of fat on the body that are resistant to weight loss. These stubborn areas of fat are best treated with liposuction. The goal of liposuction is to remove stubborn areas of fat and to create a smooth, trim, and aesthetically pleasing body contour.
Who is a candidate for Liposuction?
You may want to consider liposuction if you have:
- Stubborn, localized areas of fat that are resistant to diet and exercise
- Areas of fat deposits that create a disharmonious contour of the arms, flanks, back, abdomen, or thighs
The ideal liposuction patient is in good physical condition and stable at their goal weight. Liposuction is not a substitute for generalized weight loss. Liposuction does not fix cellulite, stretch marks, or loose skin.
How is Liposuction Performed?
Liposuction is performed through very small incisions that are made in the skin. Through these incisions, a dilute local anesthetic is injected to assist with pain control and bleeding. Long cannulas attached to a suction device are inserted through the incisions and the areas of stubborn fat are suctioned away. At the completion of the case, the small incisions are closed loosely and a compression garment is placed.
Liposuction can be combined with almost any other plastic surgery procedure including breast surgery, and abdominoplasty.
All surgery is associated with risks. Risks associated with liposuction include bleeding, infection, contour irregularities, and need for revisional procedures. Patients that have a very large amount of fat removed are at a higher risk of complications from fluid and electrolyte shifts. It is important to talk with Dr. Rovelo about the risks of your surgery and how the risks can be minimized to provide the best possible outcome.
Liposuction is performed in an outpatient surgery setting, under general anesthesia. Surgery takes between 1-3 hours, depending on the size and number of areas being treated. Patients can go home if they have not had too much fat removed. For patients that have had a large volume of fat removed, an overnight stay in an aftercare facility is required. Patients will be seen in clinic in one week and then at regular intervals thereafter. Compression garments must be worn at all times for 2 weeks, except when showering. After 2 weeks, garments may be removed while sleeping, although continuous wear is preferable. Swelling is present immediately after surgery and may persist for up to 6 weeks. After 6 weeks, final contours should become apparent, although final outcomes cannot be assessed until after 6 months.