Liposuction

Improve body shape by removing resistant fat deposits with a tube and vacuum device.Liposuction can help sculpt the body by removing unwanted fat from specific areas, including the abdomen, hips, buttocks, thighs, knees, upper arms, chin, cheeks and neck.

What is it Liposuction?

Improve body shape by removing resistant fat depositswith a tube and vacuum device. Liposuction can help sculpt the body by removing unwanted fat from specific areas, including the abdomen, hips, buttocks, thighs, knees, upper arms, chin, cheeks and neck.

Liposuction techniques

There are several liposuction techniques that can be used to improve the ease of the procedure and to enhance outcome.The basic technique of liposuction, as described above, is used in all patients undergoing this procedure. However, as the procedure has been developed and refined, several variations have been introduced. Fluid Injection, a technique in which a medicated solution is injected into fatty areas before the fat is removed, is commonly used by plastic surgeons today.

The fluid is a mixture of intravenous salt solution, a local anesthetic and epinephrine (a drug that contracts blood vessels). This technique helps the fat be removed more easily, reduces blood loss and provides anesthesia during and after surgery. Fluid injection also helps to reduce the amount of bruisingafter surgery.

In case of tumescent technique a large volumes of fluid are injected into the treated area. Tumescent liposuction, typically performed on patients who need only a local anesthetic, usually takes significantly longer than traditional liposuction (sometimes as long as 4 to 5 hours). However, because the injected fluid contains an adequate amount of anesthetic, additional anesthesia may not be necessary.

The super wet technique is similar to the tumescent technique, except that lesser amounts of fluidare used. Usually the amount of fluid injected is equal to the amount of fat to be removed. This technique often requires IV sedation or general anesthesia and typically takes one to two hours of surgery time.

Ultrasound-Assisted Lipoplasty is a technique that requires the use of a special cannula producing ultrasonic energy. This energy explodes the walls of the fat cells, liquefying the fat. The fat is then removed with the traditional liposuction technique. UAL has been shown to improve the ease and effectiveness of liposuction in fibrous areas of the body, such as the upper back or the enlarged male breast. It is also commonly used in secondary procedures, when enhanced precision is needed. In general, UAL takes longer to perform than traditional liposuction.

More extensive liposuction procedures (more than 5 liters of fat) need attentive after-care. With your fat you are loosing the water too, which can cause the post operative shock. Consult with your surgeon which post operative care he or she is going to use.

Anesthesia

If only a small amount of fat and a limited number of body sites are involved, liposuction can be performed under local anesthesia, which numbs only the affected areas. Epidural anesthesia can be a good choice for more extensive procedures. However, some surgeons prefer general anesthesia, particularly if a large volume of fat is being removed. With a general anesthesia you’ll sleep through the entire operation. Typically, people are requested not drink, eat and smoke for about 6 hours before the general anesthetic and may need overnight stay in hospital.

The surgery

The surgery takes from one up to two hours, depending on execution extent (size of the area, amount of fat being removed, the type of anesthesia and the technique used). Liposuction is a procedure in which localized deposits of fat are removed to recontour one or more areas of the body. Through a tiny incision (about 6mm long), a narrow tube is inserted and used to vacuum the fat layer that lies deep beneath the skin. The cannula is pushed then pulled through the fat layer, breaking up the fat cells and suctioning them out. The suction action is provided by a vacuum pump or a large syringe, depending on the surgeon’s preference. Liposuction techniques differ as described in chapter “What is liposuction”.

Since the fluid is lost along with the fat, the fluid infusions are applied during and after the surgery to prevent shock. For this reason, patients need to be carefully monitored. Corrective procedures or repeating the liposuction procedure is recommended earliest after six months.

Are you the best candidate for liposuction?

To be a good candidate for liposuction, you must have realistic expectations about what the procedure can do for you. The best candidates for liposuction are normal-weight people with firm, elastic skin who have pockets of excess fat in certain areas. You should be physically healthy and psychologically stable. Your age is not a major consideration; however, older patients may have diminished skin elasticity and may not achieve the same results as a younger patient with tighter skin. Liposuction carries greater risk for individuals with medical problems such as diabetes, significant heart or lung diseasepoor blood circulation, or those who have recently had surgery near the area to be contoured.

Before your surgery

During your initial consultation, your surgeon will explain the surgery in detail, explaining whichliposuction techniques are most appropriate for you. You will together determine where your fat deposits lie and assess the condition of your skin. Be sure to discuss your expectations frankly with your surgeon. He or she should be equally frank with you, describing your alternatives and the risks and limitations of each.

Your surgeon will give you instructions to prepare for surgery, including guidelines on eating and drinking, smoking, and taking or avoiding certain vitamins and medications. You may be asked not to use any medications containing acetylsalicyclic acid (such as Acylpyrin, Aspirin, Alnogon, Mironal, etc.). It can increase bleeding during and after surgery.

It is assumed that no acute illnesses occurred in the period of at least three weeks before the planned operation (viral illness, cold, etc.). Report any illness to your doctor. If you smoke, plan to quit at least one to two weeks before your surgery and not to resume for at least two weeks after your surgery. While making preparations, be sure to arrange for someone to drive you home after your surgery and to help you out for a few days, if needed.

After you surgery

Don’t expect to look or feel great right after surgery. You may experience some pain, burning, swelling, bleeding and temporary numbness. Pain can be controlled with medications prescribed by your surgeon, though you may still feel stiff and sore for a few days. Your surgeon may also use antibiotics to prevent infection. You may experience fluid drainage from the incisions. Occasionally, a small drainage tube may be inserted beneath the skin for a couple of days to prevent fluid build-up.

To control swelling and to help your skin better fit its new contours, you may be fitted with a snug elastic garment to wear over the treated area for a few weeks. Healing is a gradual process. Your surgeon will probably tell you to start walking around as soon as possible to reduce swelling and to help prevent blood clots from forming in your legs. You will begin to feel better after about a week or two and you should be back at work within a few days following your surgery. The stitches are usually removed within the week after surgery.

Sports or other physical activity should be avoided for about a month as your body continues to heal. Although most of the bruising and swelling usually disappears within three weeks, some swelling may remain for six months or more. You should follow your surgeon follow-up visits schedule to monitor your progress and to see if any additional procedures are needed.

What is the results duration?

You will see a noticeable difference in the shape of your body quite soon after surgery. However, improvement will become even more apparent after about four to six weeks, when most of the swelling has subsided. After about three months, any persistent mild swelling usually disappears and the final contour will be visible. If your expectations are realistic, you will probably be very pleased with the results of your surgery. You may find that you are more comfortable in a wide variety of clothes and more at ease with your body. By eating a healthy diet and getting regular exercise, you can help to maintain your new shape.