Liposuction is a body-sculpting surgical procedure that reshapes targeted areas of the body. This procedure improves your shape and proportions by removing localized pockets of fat in various parts of the body.
Regular exercise and a healthy diet are important to help you look and feel your best, but when it comes to fat loss, there are some things that a healthy lifestyle can’t do. For most people—no matter how in shape they are—there are still one or two areas on the body where fat stubbornly lingers. When this is the case, it’s often due to genetics and other factors that can’t be controlled, which means there’s no diet or exercise that can target the fat in those areas.
There is a solution, liposuction. This medical procedure allows your surgeon to remove those stubborn pockets of fat from targeted areas of your body, sculpting your ideal form.
For most people, liposuction is a cosmetic procedure, but there are a few medical conditions that can be treated with liposuction. For example:
Even if you’re at or near your ideal weight, you may still have some parts of your body that you think of as “problem areas,” where you have some extra fat that you’d prefer wasn’t there. Perhaps you’ve even been trying to diet and exercise the fat away and are frustrated by the fact that it’s just not working.
Many people think of liposuction as a procedure for the hips, thighs, and buttocks, but it can actually be performed on many other parts of the body:
In many cases, fat removal doesn’t just improve the way the body looks, it also improves the way clothes fit. This is particularly the case when it comes to the bust, hips, waist, and thighs, as improving these proportions will naturally improve clothing fit.
The great thing about liposuction is that the effects are permanent. The fat cells that were removed won’t “grow back.” However, not all of the fat cells in a given area can be removed, only a portion of them. This means that having liposuction doesn’t prevent new weight gain, so it’s important to exercise and follow a healthy diet in order to maintain your new shape.
When you have a liposuction consultation with Dr. Obaid, the focus is on talking about what you want liposuction to do for you and whether liposuction is the best way to achieve your goals. You’ll also talk about what the liposuction procedure entails and what you need to do to prepare for it.
The objective of liposuction is to remove small pockets of fat to improve the silhouette, but it’s not a substitute for substantial weight loss. A good candidate for liposuction is someone who is already at or near their ideal healthy weight but has some “problem areas” that don’t respond to diet and exercise. For best results, candidates should have good muscle tone and firm skin. They should be willing to continue a healthy lifestyle after the procedure.
Liposuction is ideal for combining with other procedures, and many people who have procedures such as breast lifts, tummy tucks, and mommy makeovers, choose to have liposuction at the same time.
The fat removed during liposuction can even be transferred into other parts of the body, as in the Brazilian butt lift and breast augmentation without implants.
Both liposuction and a tummy tuck can improve your waistline and your overall body shape, but they’re performed for different reasons.
The tummy tuck procedure is designed to remove excess skin around the abdomen and to tighten the abdominal muscles. It’s ideal for people who have lost a large amount of weight or who have been pregnant.
Liposuction involves the removal of fat only and is best for people who have a small amount of excess fat they want to remove and who have good muscle tone with no excess skin.
What you need to do to prepare for liposuction depends on your current habits and lifestyle. If you’re a smoker, you’ll be asked to stop smoking for at least four weeks prior to the procedure. This is important to minimize the risk of complications and help your body heal. Certain kinds of medications, such as blood thinners, also increase the risks. You may be asked to modify your medication regimen before the procedure too.
On the day of your liposuction procedure, you’ll arrive at our clinic in the morning and see Dr. Obaid briefly to go over any last-minute details.
There are several different ways to perform liposuction. The most common is called tumescent liposuction. An anesthetic solution is injected into the body before fat is removed via a thin, hollow tube called a cannula. The anesthetic solution numbs the area, reduces bleeding, and makes the fat easier to remove. Liposuction can be performed under a local or general anesthetic.
In general, it takes around one hour to perform liposuction on one part of the body, so the time it takes for a procedure depends on how many areas of the body are being worked on.
If liposuction is being combined with another procedure, the entire surgery is likely to take several hours.
Many people can go home on the same day as their procedure. If you have liposuction in several different parts of the body or combine liposuction with a procedure such as a tummy tuck or a mommy makeover, you might stay at our surgery center overnight before going home the next day.
As with any other surgical procedure, there are risks and complications associated with liposuction. In general, the better your general health and fitness, the lower your risk of experiencing complications.
There are some rare but dangerous complications that can be life-threatening. These include organ damage, formation of blood or fat clots, excessive fluid or blood loss, and infection. There is also a low risk of having a toxic or allergic reaction to the anesthetic solution that is injected into the body during liposuction.
Some of the risks of liposuction can be minimized by stopping smoking several weeks before the procedure, being in good general health, and following your surgeon’s instructions during the recovery period.
Most people recover quite quickly from liposuction and are able to return to work in just a few days. At the one-week mark, patients return to see Dr. Obaid for a follow-up to make sure that recovery is proceeding as normal.
After a couple of weeks, most people can return to all of their usual activities. Note that these are average times; for people who have larger or multiple areas of fat removed, the recovery period may be longer.
Most people experience certain side effects after having liposuction. Common side effects include swelling, bruising, and soreness around the parts of the body where fat was removed. There may also be some localized numbness. Some people may also experience some irritation of the sites where cannulas were placed, and in rare cases there may be small scars at these sites.
Finally, the skin around the treatment sites may temporarily appear looser than normal, but as long as skin tone is good, it should tighten up within a few months.
Some rare side effects of liposuction include changes in skin color in the treatment area and damage to nerves or other tissues in the treatment area.
It doesn’t take long to see the initial results of liposuction. Even though bruising and swelling linger for several weeks, it’s usually possible to see within less than a week that your body’s general shape has improved. The full results, after all the swelling has gone and the skin has tightened, might not be apparent for several months.
Do you think liposuction is what you’ve been looking for to rid yourself of extra fat and contour your body just the way you want it? Call North Texas Plastic Surgery to set up a consultation today!
Liposuction is a popular and well-respected method of permanently removing fat from unwanted areas of the body. The procedure utilizes tumescent liposuction to suck out unwanted fat while you’re under local or general anesthesia, resulting in immediately noticeable improvements that progressively get better over 3 to 6 months.