Liposuction is a procedure that involves removing fat from the body and can be carried out on many areas. Liposuction is a favoured procedure for people who find that they are unable to remove areas of excess fat through conventional means such as exercise, and can be carried out alongside other procedures such as abdominoplasty (tummy tuck).
Your surgeon will discuss your medical history with you and any medicines you are taking. Information such as your height and weight will be collated and your expectations will be discussed.
Liposuction is designed for those with excess fat that cannot be burnt off during exercse. The candidate will usually be of average weight and should have firm but elastic skin. As such, liposucion may not be particularly effective for older people.
The first step toward in deciding whether to go ahead with surgery should be to choose a competent surgeon for your initial consultation.
Your surgeon will provide you with a list of ‘dos and don’ts’ prior to surgery. This will include information on the medications you should avoid, and advice about what to eat and drink. It is important that you share details of all medicines, including herbal remedies, supplements and vitamins in case you are taking something that may increase your risk of bleeding during surgery.
All of these products can help with cravings and are available over the counter. You will need to make the surgeon aware if you begin taking these as they can have an impact on healing.
Generally there are 4 steps involved in the liposuction surgery process:
You will have to wear compression garments after the liposuction surgery procedure. Though with the open-drainage technique the tiny incisions are left open (no sutures), wearing compression garments for a couple of days accelerate drainage of the tumescent solution from under the skin. With the closed-drainage technique, you must use compression garments for a few weeks post-op to force the anesthetic solution to be absorbed by the blood vessels.
After liposuction surgery, you can expect that the area you have had treated will be swollen and sore. It may be that the points of incision are left open to drain additional fatty deposits left over from surgery. If this is the case, you may be given anti-biotics to prevent the potential for infection. The Doctor will be able to advise on how pain or discomfort is to be managed aftet the procedure. Sometimes lasers can be used to help with any pain experienced by the patient.
Liposuction after-care will include bandaging and you will be given advice on how quickly you can expect liposuction swelling to subside, when to return to work and how long you will need the bandaging for. It is usually suggested that the patient try to move whenever – and as quickly as – possible to avoid the risk of clotting. Movement is restricted to non-strenuous activities, however. You will also have to wear compression garments for a while.
Although results may be seen as soon as a week after liposuction surgery, it could take some months before the final results will be evident, and so as with other cosmetic surgery, patience is required.
There are of course, as with any procedure, associated risks to consider. These include the potential for infection, hematoma, numbness, burns, swelling and shock, amongst others.
Risks can be avoided if you share your medical history and details of your medication with your surgeon. Following before and after liposuction surgery advice will help to minimize risk and of course, choosing a surgeon with the right experience will put you in safer hands too.