How to Get the Fat OutA Description of Liposuction

By: Lloyd M. Krieger, MD-7577

Liposuction is a commonly performed plastic surgery procedure. It is a very effective technique for removing areas of fatty bulge that are non-responsive to diet and exercise. Liposuction can be performed on a wide variety of body locations such as the abdomen, thighs, hips, arms, chin, and 'love handles.'

If you have an area on your body with more fat than you would like, then liposuction may be a viable option for you if your plastic surgeon deems you an appropriate candidate. But before you can make a serious decision about pursuing liposuction, you naturally want to know something about it. Essentially, how does liposuction get the fat out?

During a liposuction procedure, the area of your body that is going to be treated will have a fluid injected into the fat tissues in order to make it easier for the plastic surgeon to sculpt the tissue and remove fat.

Of course, anesthetic is injected into the same area as well so you don't experience pain during the procedure and it also helps to keep you comfortable following the procedure. A third set of ingredients uses a blood vessel constricting medicine that reduces bleeding.

Once the body area has been prepared, your plastic surgeon will make multiple small incisions to access the fat tissues beneath the skin. The incisions are strategically located in natural skin folds to reduce the visibility of scars. Through the incisions, small tubes are inserted to pull out the fat.

Beyond the basics of the liposuction procedure, there are various techniques that your plastic surgeon may employ on a case-by-case basis depending on what you may need. Examples of types of liposuction are microliposuction and ultrasound-assisted liposuction. Many liposuction approaches are available and more techniques are being developed all the time. Your plastic surgeon will help you consider your options based on your body and what you hope to achieve.

For the most part, liposuction is an outpatient surgery. The extent of your liposuction surgery and your preferences along with your surgeon's judgment will determine whether you have a general or local anesthesia. It is also quite common for long-lasting local anesthetics to be injected into the surgery site to reduce pain for a couple days while you ease into recovery.

As you consider liposuction, it is important that you accept that liposuction is not a cure-all for weight problems. In fact, liposuction is best applied to people of normal or near-normal weight who want to address fatty areas and smooth away bulges.

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