Growing in popularity, liposuction is a common cosmetic surgery procedure used by women and men. Lipo, as it is often referred to, removes unwanted fat from abdomen, buttocks, thighs, neck or back of arms. Women usually opt to have the procedure perfomed on the abdomen and thighs, with men leaning more toward the flanks (love handles) and abdomen.
Local or general anesthesia can be used during liposuction, depending on technique used. The Tumescent technique commonly used today has eliminated the necessity of a blood transfusion being given as a standard part of the procedure. A hollow tube known as a cannula is used with an aspirator to suction out unwanted fat from the desired area. The cannula creates tiny tunnels to filter through the fatty layers, and after surgery these tunnels collapse leaving an improved contour providing the desired appearance for the patient.
Returning to work can occur as quickly as 1-2 days post-surgery for desk jobs. Regular exercise can be carefully resumed in 2-4 days. If cost is a consideration, the ranges vary depending upon expertise of surgeon along with amount of tissue removed. The recommended amount of fat tissue that can safely be removed during one liposuction cosmetic surgery is 6-8 pounds. If more is desired to be removed, surgeons will advise patients to undergo 2 procedures with 3-4 weeks separating them. Be careful not to remove too much as “oversuction” may produce dents and/or lumpiness in the respective area.
The results of liposuction are permanent; although normal aging will occur and if excess weight is gained the effects will be altered. Pregnancy is not thought to hinder the results, as long as weight gained during the pregnancy is lost post childbirth.