The Plastic Surgery Group of Rochester understands the importance of feeling good about your appearance. In fact, we have made it our business to help the men and women of Rochester, Buffalo, and Syracuse find their personal path to their best self; the self that they see when they close their eyes.
What do you see when you imagine your ideal appearance? Is stubborn fat standing in the way of you and your most confident self? At our Western New York offices, liposuction surgery is used to remove localized deposits of fat, helping sculpt specific areas of the body, such as the hips, thighs, knees, abdomen, buttocks, upper arms, neck, chin, and cheeks.
What is Liposuction?
Liposuction, also known as lipo, is a surgical body-sculpting procedure that focuses on removing localized pockets of fat cells. This procedure has been around for decades, and has undergone significant advances thanks to innovative technologies, such as laser and ultrasound.
Am I a Good Candidate for Liposuction?
If you have stubborn fat that will not go away regardless of your healthy habits, you are likely a good candidate for liposuction. Other aspects we consider include:
- Good general health and weight. The ideal candidate will be within about 20 pounds of an ideal weight for his or her frame. Also, weight should be stable for several months prior to the procedure.
- It is ideal to commit to a healthy lifestyle in order to support the results of liposuction.
- Individuals who smoke can have liposuction. However, there is a need to avoid tobacco in the weeks leading up to the procedure, as well as through recovery.
- A healthy sense of self is an important factor in feeling satisfied with the results, as are realistic expectations of what the surgery can accomplish.
- Liposuction will not remove cellulite. It also will not tighten loose, sagging skin. We will discuss these concerns, if necessary, during your consultation so we can make arrangements for additional or alternative treatment.
What Areas Can Liposuction Treat?
Liposuction can treat both large and small areas. While there is a limit to how much fat one can remove at any given time, it is possible to have the procedure in multiple areas at one time. Common treatment sites include:
- Hips and thighs
- Upper arms
- Neck and chin.
Liposuction Surgery Before and After
Types of Liposuction Surgery
Since we first began using the procedure in the Rochester, Buffalo, and Syracuse area, liposuction has benefited from several technological advances. Newer, more advanced procedures, including ultrasound-assisted lipoplasty and the tumescent technique, are helping our plastic surgeons to provide patients from Syracuse, Buffalo and Rochester with liposuction in which the results are more precise and the recovery times quicker. Liposuction cannot replace a healthy lifestyle and good eating habits, but it can help you get rid of stubborn concentrations of fat that don’t respond to diet and exercise.
- Ultrasound-Assisted Lipoplasty makes use of a special cannula that produces extremely high-frequency sound waves. As the cannula moves back and forth through fat deposits, the ultrasonic energy liquefies fat by destroying the walls of the fat cells. Liquefied fat is then vacuumed out quickly and easily with the cannula, in the same manner as traditional liposuction.
- The Tumescent Technique helps reduce the post operative bruising, swelling and pain that accompany a traditional liposuction procedure. When performing tumescent technique liposuction, your surgeon will inject a large amount of liquid anesthetic into the areas of excess fat, causing the area containing the fat to become swollen and firm, or “tumesced.” This expansion of the area around the fat deposits allows the liposuction cannula more freedom of movement as it removes fat beneath the skin. There is minimal blood loss in tumescent technique liposuction, so there is less likelihood that a blood transfusion will be necessary.
How To Prepare For Fat Removal Surgery
We discuss pre-op instructions with patients in the weeks prior to surgery. Some general guidelines include:
- NO smoking!
- Avoid the use of herbal remedies and medications that may increase bleeding, including aspirin.
- Implement healthy eating and exercise habits.
- Make sure you drink plenty of water every day leading up to and following the procedure.
How Is Liposuction Performed?
In a liposuction procedure, a thin tube called a “cannula” is inserted through a tiny incision, and is used to suction out the layers of fat underneath the skin. The cannula is moved back and forth through the fat during the liposuction procedure, breaking up the fat deposits and vacuuming them out. If you are having liposuction performed on a number of areas, your surgeon will then move to the next site, keeping any incisions as small and unobtrusive as possible.
What Other Procedures Can Be Combined with Lipo?
Liposuction is often combined with abdominoplasty or skin-tightening techniques, such as a neck lift with liposuction of the chin. The procedure can also be performed in conjunction with breast reduction. We can help you decide which technique is right for you.
Is Liposuction Painful?
Depending on the technique, we will perform liposuction with either sedation or general anesthesia.The use of proper anesthetic techniques makes the procedure itself very comfortable.
How Long Do Liposuction Results Last?
The results of liposuction can last your lifetime. You are in the driver’s seat! The more you move, and the better you eat and treat your body, the less likely you are to struggle with excess fat.
Typically, the post-operative time is slightly painful. Patients express feeling sore, especially when transitioning from a resting to active type of movement. We provide prescription pain medication to alleviate discomfort. You typically will wear compression garments for several weeks after your procedure. It is important to walk as soon as you comfortably can. This encourages circulation and decreases swelling more quickly than if you remain sedentary. Patients should avoid smoking and alcohol consumption for several weeks. This allows adequate tissue oxygenation and circulation.
Risks of Surgical Fat Removal
Liposuction is a cosmetic surgery that comes with some major and minor risks. We do not recommend using liposuction as an alternative to healthy eating and exercise. Risks of liposuction include:
- Dimpled skin
- Increased sensitivity or numbness
- Asymmetrical body contours
- Issues with healing
Liposuction Fat Removal Alternatives
Recent advances in aesthetic medicine have brought non-surgical treatment options to patients seeking fat-reduction. These include CoolSculpting and Exilis, among others. While some patients do experience a loss of a few inches in the months after non-surgical fat-reduction treatments (a full series), the results are not comparable to those of liposuction. If you want to enjoy the most noticeable results, obtain liposuction from your experienced, board-certified cosmetic surgeon.