Liposuction is an great procedure for men or women with diet and exercise resistant fat deposits. Liposuction is best indicated for patients at or near their ideal body weight. However, patients at a stable, reasonable and manageable body weight are also good candidates. Ideal candidates for liposuction also have retained elasticity of the skin without true skin excess. Liposuction is NOT a weight loss tool. Liposuction is a tool to reduce fat in areas of fat excess, improve contour and shape. Liposuction can be used in almost any area of the body where there is fat excess. However, the most typical areas treated are the abdomen/flanks, hips, thighs, arms and neck. Liposuction does NOT treat fat ‘inside’ the body. Liposuction treats fat this is under the skin or subcutaneous. There are a number of ‘advertised’ methods of performing liposuction. Don’t believe everything you read about liposuction. Go to a board certified plastic surgeon and let that surgeon educate you on what can and cannot be done with liposuction and other ‘advertised’ procedures.
As Dr. Lewis states,
“Liposuction is one of the most logical procedures I perform. Fat cells are removed permanently.”
Liposuction, also known as lipoplasty or liposculpture, is a two part procedure performed during the same operation. This procedure is done under general anesthesia. Small areas can be treated under IV sedation anesthesia also. The procedure is performed on an outpatient basis. Small incisions are made in natural, hidden skin folds. Thru those small incisions a solution or “infiltrate” is infused into the areas to be treated. That solution continues dilute anesthetic (lidocaine) and a small amount of epinephrine to minimize bleeding. Again, through those small incisions, fat is removed carefully and precisely to an appropriate endpoint using a small cannula and suction. Liposuction can be performed alone or can also be combined with other procedures such as a tummy tuck, face lift or breast reduction.
What to Expect
The operative time for liposuction depends largely upon how many areas are treated and how much fat is removed. For most patients this is an outpatient procedure. If you require larger volumes of fat removal then you may be a candidate for overnight stay at the Surgery Center or hospital. There is mild to moderate discomfort which is easily managed with oral pain medication. You can expect swelling and bruising which diminishes with time. Compressive garments are usually recommended and worn for up to two weeks after surgery. Dr. Lewis will review those specifics with you at your office visit.
You will need a ride to and from the surgery center. You should dress comfortably the day of surgery. Prior to surgery you should try and get as much rest as possible. You will consult with Dr. Lewis before surgery to discuss your desires and expectations.
Most patients are able to return to work within a week (a little more time is required if your job is physically active or requires lifting) after a few days resting at home. After about one month, in consultation with Dr. Lewis and his staff, you’ll be able to start easing back into your normal exercise routine. While a definite difference is visible right after surgery, postoperative swelling will take several months to gradually decrease, and your results will look optimal in about three to six months.