Liposuction and Tummy Tuck Explained
Liposuction was developed in the 1970’s and has evolved into a million dollar industry. It was made popular in the late 1980’s when many celebrities had the procedure done with good results. Note, however, that most plastic surgeons caution that liposuction and its alternatives should not be used as a weight loss tool. Although the fat that is removed cannot be reproduced, more fat can develop if a proper diet and exercise routine is not established.
When liposuction was first introduced to the public, the procedure was quite involved and invasive. Even today, some surgeons follow procedures that require that the patients undergo general anesthesia. These doctors also use large bore suction instruments known as “cannulas”. This type of procedure is usually performed in a hospital or outpatient surgical center by a surgeon who is accompanied by an anesthesiologist. The cannulas being used in the procedure generally have rough or sharp edges to assist in dislodging the fatty tissue. The cannulas use suction to tear and remove fat in small bits. Unfortunately, they also tear and damage blood vessels, nerves, and connective tissue. This method typically results in a longer recovery time and often requires that the patient miss one to two weeks of work. The patient usually experiences significant soreness and bruising as well. It is not unusual for the patient to remain in the hospital overnight. Although this method is still being used by many plastic surgeons today, significant advances have been made and alternatives are available.
Liposuction is the primary form of cosmetic surgery being used to remove localized fat deposits from different parts of the body. The advantage of this surgical procedure is that the doctor can target a specific area for the removal of fat tissue. Generally, it is used primarily to remove areas of fatty tissue that are otherwise difficult to lose with dieting or exercise. There is a false notion that liposuction is a treatment for obesity, but, in reality, this surgery is performed primarily to remove fatty deposits or loose sagging skin from a particular area. Sufficient skin is left so as not to disrupt the body configuration and it also adds value to the body silhouette.
Liposuction is more likely aimed at removing the thick subcutaneous fat layer. This is where the majority of people find the best result when it comes to having liposuction surgery. When the procedure is applied to the thin superficial layer of fat, inconsistencies are sure to emerge and become visible to the eye. But, with the advancement of surgical instruments and newly developed procedures, we are seeing a much better outcome in these liposuction applications. Some of the more common areas in which this procedure is used include chin liposuction, thigh liposuction, arm liposuction and neck liposuction. Patients routinely see vast improvements in these areas of their bodies.
Liposuction is not really an acceptable treatment for obesity, or a good process for weight loss. Because only so much fat can be safely removed during the procedure, plastic surgeons are prevented from treating the obese. Another reason is that liposuction is not designed to remove the even layer of fat found on the obese, as it is a contouring procedure—designed for smoothing out those problem areas. For weight loss in the overweight population, doctors will likely place you on a weight loss diet, or may suggest a surgical procedure like gastric bypass.
The Liposuction Procedure
Your liposuction surgeon will be making several tiny access incisions (cuts) that are one eighth to one half inch in length at the places on your body where fat is to be extracted. Exactly how many cuts will be made depends on how much fat is being removed, and from how many places on your body. When it is plausible, these cuts will be placed in skin folds and patches of hair (like the pubic area) to keep them subdued from view. Even if the cuts are not hidden in the bellybutton, skin creases, or under the fold of the buttocks, the residual scars will be pretty difficult to spot.
Lipo surgery has been connected to several death cases, but this is also true for most other surgical procedures that people undertake. Liposuction is criticized for the same since it is a cosmetic form of surgery. It does not always have anything to do with someone’s health since some people just want some body sculpting so they can feel better about themselves and be more appealing to others. So, this is not a good reason though to black-mark this profession as many people who commit to it do it for health purposes. When people choose to sign up for a liposuction operation, they should take the necessary precautions. They should research the facts about the clinic and the doctors who would be involved in performing and conducting this operation.
Recovery from Cosmetic Surgery Lipo
During the recovery process from the newer form of Liposuction, you will find it is only a fraction of what you used to expect. While in previous cases it took up to six weeks to fully recover, you can now be back on your feet in one or two days tops. From there, you wear a compression bandage for a couple of weeks and you are fully healed. There is little to no down time.
As with any type of surgery, there will be some pain with liposuction. There will also be bruising in the area that is treated although it should be very minimal. Swelling also occurs with liposuction. Doctors recommend that the affected area be wrapped tightly until the swelling dissipates. When you choose to use liposuction alternatives, there are usually none of these side effects because it is not an invasive surgery.
How Much Does Liposuction Cost?
The costs of liposuction and its alternatives are usually not covered by insurance. The costs of both methods can be high and payment is due at the time the services are rendered. A standard liposuction treatment starts at around $3,500 dollars. Depending on how many areas you want the treated, it can cost up to $15,000 dollars. Many cosmetic surgeons take this into consideration and will set up payment plans as long as you pay half in advance. Everything that is required for the procedure is included in this amount, so there are no hidden costs. If a hospital stay is required, only those charges will be added.
Finally, the revolutionary SMART LIPO laser adds a whole new dimension to liposuction. It affords the doctor the ability to tighten skin that otherwise would remain loose. This is vitally important for many female patients with abdominal stretch marks and looseness following pregnancy. This tightening effect is also very beneficial in areas of loose skin on the neck, and arms. Of course, the most important factor determining good results is the ability of the surgeon performing the surgery.
Are You a Candidate for Liposuction?
Rhinoplasty (nose surgery), breast lifts, breast reduction, breast implants and liposuction are the most commonly opted for cosmetic surgeries. One does not necessarily have to be fat for a liposuction; cellulite could also be due to fatty deposits. Sometimes on losing too much of weight the skin starts sagging and falling loose. No amount of exercise can help sagging or loose skin. Only the removal of fat like a tummy tuck or a thigh lift can alter the situation and can reduce the appearance of cellulite to an extent.
To decide if you are a good candidate for liposuction, your doctor will likely take into consideration the volume and location of the fat on your body. Almost as important as the fat, is the quality of your skin including the tone and elasticity that is present. This is important because after the procedure, the skin will need to contour to your new and improved shape. For this reason, it remains true that those who are younger find better results with liposuction.
A thorough weight history is an essential part of any liposuction consultation. Ideal candidates are at a stable weight with a successful diet and exercise regimen going on. Patients who have a history of marked weight fluctuations are at high risk for weight gain after the procedure. Maintaining a stable weight and practicing a diet and exercise regimen for at least 6 to 12 months indicates the necessary commitment to lifestyle change.
Despite its popularity, liposuction should not be resorted to as a treatment modality for obesity. In a perfect world, it is used to remove genetically distributed or diet resistant fat. In practical terms, however, it is often used to remove fat that could be lessened with diet and exercise. Ideal liposuction candidates are within 15 to 20 % of their ideal body weight or no more than 55 pounds above chart weight. Strangely distributed bulges of fat, or fat that is distributed outside the confines of the perfect body shape should be the target areas that are commonly suctioned.
Finding the Best Liposuction and Tummy Tuck Surgeon
It is important to find a top surgeon who possesses the ability to sculpt the body and who has an uncompromising level of perfection. With cosmetic surgery, including tummy tucks and liposuction, it is important to get it “right” the first time. There are many sources of information about doctors that specialize in tummy tucks and liposuction. Be sure to gather as much information as you can.
We have compiled information for you regarding the best lipo doctors in Charleston, SC and tummy tuck surgeons in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina. We also have information about other cosmetic procedures including breast augmentation and rhinoplasty cosmetic surgery.