Liposuction is a cosmetic procedure that removes fat through surgical methods. Fatty tissues that are removed can be caused by genetics.

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This can be an option to remove small bulges to improve your body or face’s shape. Liposuction is commonly performed around the following areas: the hips, belly, thighs, buttocks and face.

These common areas are improved physically through a cosmetic surgeon. It is also common for liposuction to be done with other procedures such as facelifts and breast reductions.

Who is The Best Candidate?

A good candidate for liposuction should expect a realistic result as the procedure won’t get rid of cellulite. So if you want to do liposuction in the hope of removing cellulite, this procedure is not for you.

Liposuction is a surgical procedure, and it comes with risks. You have to make sure that you are in good health before getting liposuction. These are the requirements:

  • Be at an ideal weight
  • Firm, elastic skin
  • In good health
  • Not smoking

Patients with poor skin quality (cellulite) are not good candidates for the liposuction procedure. Patients may develop skin irregularities due to under or over-correction of localised fat deposits. This procedure can also be done from as young as a teenager.

However, older patients are more likely to have less elasticity in their skin, so they may not achieve the best or the same benefits of liposuction that a younger patient with tighter skin might achieve.

Certain health conditions may not make you a suitable liposuction candidate. People with chronic health conditions such as diabetes and high blood pressure are more likely to achieve a less desirable result.

Patients who have deficient levels of immunity or blood circulation are affected. Sufferers from heart disease or lung disease should not undergo liposuction too, as they could suffer serious health complications.

What You Should Know Before Getting a Liposuction

Consulting with your surgeon before undergoing liposuction is essential. Discuss your goals, the risks and benefits, and of course, the costs. Your surgeon will give the best option. Do ask any questions to your surgeon; it is essential for you to know everything first before going into the procedure.

Give information about any allergies you have or any medications you take, including over-the-counter and supplements. The doctor will recommend you to stop taking certain medication that might have any effect on the procedure, such as blood thinners several weeks before surgery.

The Liposuction Procedure

The procedure of liposuction depends on the type of liposuction you are undergoing. The method may be performed at the doctor’s practice or surgery centre, or if large amounts of fat are being removed, it requires an overnight stay and the procedure will be done in a hospital.

Anaesthesia will be given before the procedure. The anaesthesia varies and may only be locally applied, depends on the degree of fat being removed.

The liposuction is performed using a suction device, attached to a small, stainless steel instrument (cannula). The cannula is inserted into the fatty areas between your skin and muscle. The device then removes excess fat, using a suction pump or a large syringe. The length of time will vary, depending on the amount of fat is being removed.

Types of Liposuction

There are a few of different liposuction techniques, these include:

Tumescent liposuction – The most common procedure where the surgeon injects a sterile solution into the area where the fat is to be removed. The solution consists of saline, along with lidocaine and epinephrine. The solution helps to suction the fat with less blood loss and pain.

Ultrasound-assisted liposuction – UAL, uses sound waves energy under your skin to rupture the cell walls of the fat. This liquefies the fat so it can be suctioned out easier.

Laser-assisted liposuction – Also known as SmartLipo, uses a laser to produce a burst of energy to liquefy the fat in the procedure.

Liposuction Recovery

The recovery after liposuction is usually quick and immediate. Normal activities can be resumed after two weeks. Bruising, swelling and soreness for at least a few weeks should be expected. This depends on factors like the volume of fat cells that are removed and the area of the removal.

The fat cells that are removed are permanently gone. If you gain weight after the procedure, it usually will not be the operated area. However, liposuction will not prevent you from gaining weight again, so you need to keep your new shape and weight after liposuction. A proper diet and exercise plan must be followed after.

Potential Risks of Liposuction

All surgical procedures come with some inherent risk. Liposuction has a good safety record and the risk can be minimised by choosing a specially trained, board-certified plastic surgeon.

Although rare, the risks include:

  • Bleeding
  • Fluid accumulation
  • Complications from anaesthesia
  • Infection
  • Uneven fat removal
  • Numbness
  • Burns
  • Fat embolism
  • Nerves, blood vessels, muscles, lungs, and abdominal organs damage.

If you need more information about liposuction or if you’re interested in performing the procedure, book an appointment now with the Okadoc app, now available in App Store and Google Play.