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Liposuction: 10 Things to Know & Ask

Fat removal and body contouring procedures are the most popular plastic surgery procedures done each year. Liposuction continues to be one of the most opted-for aesthetic plastic surgery treatments chosen by patients every year. Most people have heard of liposuction, but very few know much about the cosmetic surgery. At Heartland Plastic & Hand Surgery, we strive to help our patients be fully informed before they choose to undergo any cosmetic procedure or treatment at our center. Some popular questions that people ask are listed below to help you be more informed.

1. What is Liposuction?

Liposuction is a surgical procedure that removes fat cells beneath the skin in order to shape an area of the body. This procedure uses a surgical cannula tool that is inserted through an incision and used to manually break up and remove excess fat. There are various types of liposuction techniques– tumescent liposuction being the most common choice. Beyond traditional liposuction, patients can also research methods such as laser, ultrasound, and suction-assisted liposuction– all of which remove fat from the body and reshape it to a new contour.

2. What Area(s) Can be Treated?

Liposuction can remove unwanted fat from multiple areas of the body. These areas include:

  • Chin
  • Neck
  • Upper Arms
  • Breasts
  • Abdomen
  • Love Handles/Flanks
  • Back
  • Legs (Saddle Bags/Inner Thighs)
  • Buttocks
  • Knees

The optimal treatment area(s) will change for everyone depending on their body fat and how they respond to diet and exercise.

3. Who is a Good Candidate for Liposuction?

Ideal candidates for liposuction are healthy people who are close to their ideal weight and are nonsmokers. These patients have stubborn subcutaneous fat. The type of fatty tissue that resides between muscle and skin. Along with these recommendations, patients should have good skin elasticity as liposuction removes fat but cannot provide skin tightening to improve contours.

4. How Do You Prepare For Liposuction?

When you come to the Heartland Plastic & Hand Surgery center, our team will provide you with detailed instructions to prepare for liposuction. Adjusting medications, and, in some cases, getting blood work done to make sure you can safely undergo anesthesia. On the day of your surgery, there will be a period of no food or drinks.

5. How is Liposuction Performed?

During the procedure, small incisions will be made near the treatment area. Through these small incisions, the doctor will insert a tool called a cannula. This tool is used to break up and suction out the fat. Liposuction is typically done on an outpatient basis.

6. What is the Recovery Like?

Your recovery time will vary depending on how much fat was removed. Most patients are back to work within a few days. Strenuous activity should be suspended for 3-4 weeks after liposuction. You may be fitted with a compression garment during recovery to help the skin adhere to the new contours.

7. Will There Be Scars?

The incisions used for liposuction are small since the cannula is a very small instrument. Any scarring will be small as well. Our team works to minimize the appearance of scarring from your procedure.

8. How Long Until I See Results?

You may notice some immediate improvement after the surgery, but the full results are usually covered by some bruising and swelling. It can take several weeks to see the full extent of the results of your liposuction procedure.

9. Will I Lose Weight With Liposuction?

It is important to understand that liposuction is not a weight-loss procedure. It is done to help remove stubborn pockets of fat after you have reached your ideal body weight and still need some areas of improvement. Patients who are overweight will not benefit from liposuction. Any weight loss is due to the removal of fat, but it is not an abundant amount.

10. Does the Fat Come Back After Liposuction?

The fat removed with liposuction will not return because the fat cell has been removed. However, it is still possible to gain weight in other areas, and not just the fat that lies directly under the skin, known as subcutaneous, but also the deeper visceral fat, fat that is stored within the abdominal cavity near several vital organs. Maintaining weight after liposuction surgery, as well as all other cosmetic surgeries, is the key component to being able to maintain long-lasting results. The best way to do this is to try to stick to a healthy diet and exercise regimen.

Request a Consultation

To learn more about liposuction, the treatment, and how it can benefit you, contact Heartland Plastic & Hand Surgery in Cape Girardeau, MO to meet with our board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Humphrey.

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