A very well-known surgical procedure, liposuction involves the removal of localized fat deposited underneath the skin. This is done by creating small incisions and inserting a stainless steel, hollow tube (cannula) powered by a vacuum machine. In the United States, liposuction surgery is considered to be the most popular cosmetic surgical procedure as it can be administered in several areas of the body that tend to accumulate fat such as the tummy, thighs, buttocks and hips, upper arms, stomach and waist, chest, inner knee, cheeks, neck, chin, and calves. Whether a Man or Woman, this procedure is highly effective at removing stubborn fat deposits. Liposuction can be done independently or with other cosmetic surgical procedures such as facelift, breast lift and reduction, or abdominoplasty (tummy tuck). However, while the surgery can vastly improve looks quickly, there is no substitute exercise, proper diet, and treatment for obesity.

How is liposuction done?

Several methods of performing abdominal liposuction can be done, the most common of which are laser-assisted, ultrasound-assisted, power-assisted and standard. With standard liposuction, various cannulas or stainless steel tubes are used, while oscillating cannulas are utilized in power-assisted liposuction, a method which usually targets difficult areas. Power-assisted liposuction is helpful in allowing surgeons to perform larger liposuction volumes without risking burns, trauma on fibrous tissues, and lengthy operation time.

Ultrasound-assisted liposuction involves cannulas that emit ultrasonic waves which pass through tissues and heats up to destroy fat cells on the surrounding membranes. In this process, the fat is converted into liquid form which makes aspirating easier. However, many surgeons have already refused to make use of this method as it poses high risks of severe scarring and thermal burns.

Lastly, laser-assisted liposuction makes use of a cold laser beam for fat emulsification. This method is usually done to target fat in smaller areas. The emulsified fat is not sucked out, but left in place to await natural absorption into the body. Excess fluids and fat are drained out through small incisions.

Do I qualify for liposuction?

Liposuction is a cosmetic surgical option for people who have been plagued by unwanted fat deposits that do not come off using normal diet and exercise. This excess storage of fat may result from inherited traits or a natural tendency of the body to be fat due to DNA traits passed on from the parents. If you are contemplating on getting liposuction, you must be of good physical health, a non-smoker. You should weigh within 30% more than your ideal body weight. You should also possess positive outlooks in terms of how realistic your expectations are and the goals that you envision for your body.

How will the surgery actually go about?

An office-based, accredited surgical center, ambulatory surgical center, or a hospital may be the ideal venues for a liposuction operation. Patients who will undergo the operation should make prior arrangements for transportation as they will not be able to drive home after the liposuction procedure. Depending on the recommendations of Drs. Hall and Wrye, post-operative care may be arranged by the staff. There is no fixed length of a typical liposuction, as the length of time it will take to complete the procedure depends on the areas where it will performed, the anesthesia to be used, and the liposuction method to be used. Anesthesia types will vary according to the liposuction plan which includes the size of the areas to be treated, the number of areas, and any history with surgery in the past. Some patients undergo a second surgery post-liposuction to address excess skin that may result from significant fat reduction.

How does recovery proceed?

After the surgery, elastic bandages and compression garments will be placed over the treated areas. These clothing garments are used to prevent further swelling and to compress your bodily tissues to the new body contours specified in the stomach liposuction plan. Temporary drains to be placed in the incision sites will help drain excess blood and fluids out of the operated areas. In cases where drains are not used, absorptive pads put over the liposuction sites are also an option. Drs. Hall and Wrye will be detailing to you all the specific instructions regarding how to care for the treated areas, what medication you should take for the prevention of infections and pain management, and the exercise recommended to encourage blood circulation in the operated areas. Also, take extra care in making sure that your incisions are not subjected to force, motion, and abrasion during the recovery period.

There are drugs taken prior to the operation that may increase hematoma (blood trapped underneath the skin) and post-surgical bleeding. Be attentive to the pre- and post- surgical instructions that will be given to you by Drs. Hall and Wrye before your actual operation. To summarize, the following medicines, food, and supplements are some factors that may trigger bleeding post-operation: ibuprofen, warfarin, aspirin, vitamin E, specific herbal supplements, and red wine.

What are the risks of undergoing liposuction?

As in any other surgery, there are risks involved in undergoing liposuction, more so because it is an invasive procedure that suctions out and melts body fat attached to body tissues. The following risks may occur in undergoing liposuction: persistent swelling, thermal burn or injury (ultrasound-assisted method), cardiac complications, deep vein thrombosis, problematic wound healing, excessive bleeding, allergies and other complications from anesthesia, fluid accumulation, blood clots, fat clots, skin and nerve damage, loose or rippling skin, and uneven contours. The only way to prevent having these risks is to listen intently to all the instructions that Drs. Hall and Wrye will give you. Trust that your doctors have the right skill set and top-notch aesthetic eye to assess and approach your specific needs.

What happens after the procedure?

For the swelling to completely heal and disappear, you will have to wait for up to several months – this includes the waiting time for your new figure to surface. Liposuction is a medical option for people who want to enhance their self-image and those who want body reshaping and more beautiful body contouring. The loss of fat and excess fatty tissues after liposuction should be maintained with proper, healthy diet and regular exercise. Drs. Hall and Wrye will be outlining easy-to-do steps for you to maintain your new figure and to adopt the appropriate exercise and diet programs fit for you and your body type. Dr. Hall and Dr. Wrye are experts in liposuction surgery located in Reno, Nevada, call us now for free consultation 775-284-8296.

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