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As you get older, it is more likely that small pockets of fat will develop in different locations on your body. These problem areas can be difficult to get rid of with diet and exercise alone, especially if it is an inherited trait. Liposuction, also known as "lipoplasty" or "suction lipectomy," can remove this fat, sculpting your body into a more pleasing contour. This procedure will not, however, counteract obesity - it is for smaller, localized areas of fat in the abdomen, hips, buttocks, thighs, neck, etc. It is also not a cure for cellulite.
One of the great things about liposuction surgery is that there are a variety of options. The basic procedure is the same in all cases - the doctor inserts the cannula, a narrow tube, and uses it to suction out the unwanted fat. In addition to the various areas on which liposuction can be performed, there are also a variety of techniques that can be used:
- Fluid Injection Technique - This liposuction technique is performed by inserting fluid into the fat deposit prior to removal. This will allow your surgeon to extract fat easier. This technique helps to reduce blood loss and minimize any bruises.
- Tumescent Liposuction Technique - If you don't want to be put under general anesthesia, tumescent liposuction could be the best option for you. Liquid containing large amounts of anesthesia and medicine are injected in the same way as with the Fluid Injection Technique. This means that no additional anesthesia is required, allowing you to stay awake for the duration of the surgery. This is especially important if you have negative reactions or you have a family history of complications with general anesthesia.
- Super-Wet Technique - This liposuction technique is almost identical to the tumescent technique, except it takes significantly less time to perform. It is one of the safer techniques because less fluid is introduced into the body. Because it's so much quicker, sedation or local anesthesia is often all that is required.
- Ultrasound-Assisted Lipoplasty (UAL) Technique - In order to make fat removal easier, a special cannula has been developed for liposuction surgery that emits ultrasonic energy. This basically liquefies the fat, allowing it be removed much easier, especially from any areas that are more fibrous or need a bit more precision. This is very often performed in conjunction with other liposuction techniques and will take a little longer to complete.
Clearly, there are many options to consider in your pursuit of liposuction surgery. The doctors at California Surgical Institute can help address your individual concerns and conditions to determine which technique will work best for your body. The end result will be less fat, a better body contour, and improved self-esteem. We also offer Liposuction Under Local Anesthesia for less invasive liposuction procedures.
Is Liposuction Right for Me?
If you have been thinking about undergoing liposuction, the most important thing you need to have is realistic expectations about what liposuction can do for you. Liposuction can dramatically enhance your appearance but, like all other surgeries, it's not a magical fit for everything that bothers you about your body.
As far as physical requirements go, the ideal prospects for liposuction are individuals whose weight falls in a normal range but have excess fat on specific areas of their body. Individuals with skin that is elastic and firm will achieve the best results from liposuction.
This procedure poses more risks for patients that have recently had surgery close to the site where the liposuction will be performed. Other factors that increase the risk of this surgery include sub-par blood circulation, diabetes, lung disease or heart disease.
What are the Risks of Having Liposuction?
Although a certified and experienced surgeon working in a proper environment can minimize the risks of this procedure, all surgeries present certain risks and complications. When a larger area or multiple areas are worked on during liposuction, the chance of encountering a complication with the procedure increases.
In the case of having liposuction performed on multiple or large areas, potential risks include blood clots or fat clots, delayed healing, large loss of fluids, negative reaction to a medication, perforation of a vital organ, friction burns or infection. Risks are rare and uncommon, but should be acknowledged when considering this procedure.
Certain types of liposuction also present their own specific risks. Because Ultrasonic Liposuction (UAL) uses ultrasonic heat to dissolve fat cells, in addition to potentially causing deep tissue or skin injuries, it may pose negative long-term effects that have not yet been identified; however, no conditions have currently been linked to this type of liposuction. Since anesthetic fluid is used during the super-wet and tumescent methods of liposuction, there is the potential for lidocaine toxicity or the accumulation of fluid in the lungs. This condition is extremely rare and this risk is significantly decreased by selecting a qualified plastic surgeon for your liposuction procedure.