Now among the most popular cosmetic surgery procedures, liposuction (also known as “lipoplasty” or “suction lipectomy”) sculpts the body by removing undesirable fat from areas around the thighs, knees, buttocks, waist, hips, abdomen, chin, cheeks, neck and upper arms. Ultrasound-assisted liposuction (UAL), tumescent technique and the super-wet technique are among the various techniques used to provide precise results.
Liposuction is not a substitute for a healthy diet and exercise, but the procedure can eliminate areas of fat that are unresponsive to typical weight-loss methods.
At Aesthetic Surgery Center Antwerp, we frequently treat patients from out of town. For your convenience, we have created the form below which allows you to submit information about your surgical goals and photographs of yourself for Dr. Van Look to review.
The Liposuction Procedure
One of the most common liposuction techniques is tumescent liposuction, which may get an assist from ultrasound or laser. It is performed on an outpatient basis.
During tumescent liposuction, a solution comprising saline solution, lidocaine (an anesthetic) and epinephrine (a blood-vessel contractor) is injected into the area being treated. The solution causes the targeted tissue swell and become firm, which makes it easier to remove via the cannula. The advantages to this technique are that the anesthetic is built in, so there is no need for general or IV sedation, and blood loss is minimized because the epinephrine constricts blood vessels.
In laser-assisted tumescent liposuction, a laser is used to liquefy the fat, which makes removing it easier. The laser can also be used to tighten treatment-area skin after fat is removed. Similarly, ultrasound-assisted liposuction uses ultrasound energy to liquefy fat.
Recovery From Liposuction
After liposuction, patients experience mild swelling, bruising and discomfort in the treated area. Compression garments or elastic bandages are typically worn to help reduce these symptoms as the area heals. Patients can return to work and other regular activities as soon as they feel comfortable, which is usually after a few days. Exercise and other strenuous activities should be avoided for a few weeks.
Risks Of Liposuction
In addition to the usual risks associated with surgery, risks associated with liposuction include the following:
- Loose or rippled skin
- Worsening of cellulite
- Contour irregularities
- Pigmentation irregularities
When large amounts of fat are removed, surgery to remove excess skin may be necessary.
Results Of Liposuction
Results of the liposuction procedure may not be apparent until swelling and bruising subside, which usually takes a week; swelling should completely subside within a few months. Incisions are rarely sutured, and scarring is almost nonexistent, because the incisions used for the cannula are so small. The results of liposuction are long-lasting, unless a substantial amount of weight is gained.