What liposuction procedure is best and why? Introduction Liposuction is one of the most performed and desired plastic surgery procedures in the world, and there is a clear reason behind this request. It allows for the elimination of fat from different areas of the body where it is unwanted or in excess, and it is associated with minimal risks and potential consequences. Liposuction allows people to get rid of the excess fat that can be localized in areas of the body such as the flanks, abdominal wall, chin, ankles and calves, arms, and legs, to name just a few. Liposuction can address any area of the body where there is an excess of fat tissue and where the surgeon can introduce the cannula. In this article, we will discuss more about liposuction and also what liposuction procedure is best and why. Knowing the details of liposuction Before making the decision to undergo this procedure, it is essential to have all the details about what it entails. Among these details, it is important to know who can undergo the procedure safely, what are the costs, what are the potential risks, and so on. This cosmetic surgery procedure is recommended for women as well as men. Nevertheless, the number of women versus men undergoing the procedure each year is about 4 to 1, so it is safe to say that women resort to this procedure more often than men do. However, the procedure can deliver spectacular results for both men and women of different ages and men often have a shorter recovery period. The outcomes of the procedure are more impressive for patients with a good skin tonus. Good quality skin is more likely to retract nicely on the new contours of the skin once the excess fat is removed. Despite what some people still tend to believe, liposuction is by no means a weight loss method. The procedure can only be successfully used to eliminate stubborn fat deposits from areas of the body such as the ones mentioned above. Patients should only resort to this procedure if they have tried to lose the excess fat by other means first, mainly by physical exercise and diet. The procedure is recommended only on patients of a normal weight who have managed to sustain the weight for a minimum of eight months before the procedure. This is important not only to get satisfactory results but also to be able to sustain the results for a long period of time. Liposuction is quite a complex plastic surgery procedure despite its popularity, and should only be performed by a board-certified plastic surgeon who you totally trust. To find this plastic surgeon, you can check for board-certified plastic surgeons in your area or around the country, if you don’t mind travelling. The next step would be to schedule a meeting with the plastic surgeon you have chosen to see if you can connect and if you can trust him completely. Creating a strong relationship with the plastic surgeon is important even if we are talking about a procedure that is considered easy and straightforward as complications can still occur, and the patient still needs to schedule follow-up consultations with the plastic surgeon. During the initial meeting with the plastic surgeon, he will assess your candidacy and also ask about your goals and expectations from the procedure. If you are deemed as an eligible candidate, the plastic surgeon will present you with all the details associated with the procedure, how it is going to be performed, where will be the incisions placed, and what to do before and after the procedure. The type of anesthesia, as well as the risks and complications that can occur, will also be discussed during this time. How is liposuction performed? The plastic surgeon will start by marking the areas to be treated with the procedure. The patient is put under general anesthesia in many cases before the plastic surgeon can make the incisions. The incisions are small and positioned in areas where they will be easily masked by the natural folds of the body. Through these incisions, the surgeon introduces the cannula that is used to suction the fat out of the body. Generally speaking, the procedure leaves behind minimal scars as the incisions performed for it are no longer than 3 to 4 mm. This is one of the reasons why so many people choose to undergo liposuction nowadays. The marks left behind after the procedure are insignificant compared to the results that could be achieved. What liposuction procedures are available? When liposuction is performed, small cannulas are inserted through incisions in the area targeted and the fat is suctioned out by a vacuum device that is connected to the cannulas. But there are different types of liposuction procedures that can be performed such as dry liposuction, wet liposuction, laser-assisted liposuction, and ultrasound liposuction, to name just a few. Each plastic surgeon has a preference when it comes to the type of liposuction he performs, and in a vast majority of cases, he will only perform one type of liposuction. So how can you know what type of liposuction procedure is the best? You should keep in mind that when it comes to using the fat collected for a fat transfer procedure, certain liposuction procedures such as laser-assisted liposuction are not recommended as they destroy the fat and it can’t be used for the transfer. Personally, I recommend tumescent liposuction to most of my patients. The procedure is a reinterpretation of the classic liposuction. This means that the plastic surgeon will inject the area to be treated with a tumescent solution that also acts as a local anesthetic. Because of this tumescent solution, the fat will be easier to dislodge, there will be less bleeding during the procedure, and the post-op swelling is also minimized. When this procedure is performed, the surgeon will perform back and forth movements to dislodge the fat so it allows for controlled removal of the fat. Tumescent liposuction can boast superb results when performed by a board-certified, experienced plastic surgeon and the fat collected in this manner can be used after for transfer to an area of the body that can use the added volume. What to do after liposuction Once the operation is over, the medical team will take you to your room where you will be waking up from the effects of the anesthesia. After a few hours and if no complications occur, patients can return home for the recovery process. It is important to understand that there are certain rules to be followed after liposuction to ensure the results achieved are according to the expectations and long-lasting. Among these rules is to wear the compression garments or girdle for as long as the plastic surgeon recommends it. A balanced and healthy diet with a regular physical exercise program is mandatory to help you sustain the results for longer. Keep in mind that if you gain weight, the results can be compromised. The recovery period after liposuction is often no longer than a few days, but it can depend on the complexity of the procedure, the age of the patient, as well as other factors. Keep in mind that antibiotics might be prescribed for five days post-op to help you avoid infections and that the patient is advised to get off the bed as soon as possible after the procedure. Spending too much time in bed can actually prolong the recovery process instead of expediting it. Conclusion Liposuction is one of the most sought-after procedures performed nowadays. The appeal of the procedure is explained by the fact that it allows for a removal of localized fat from different areas of the body. There is no other method that we can use today to get rid of fat from areas such as the flanks, knees, abdominal area, chin, calves, among others. It is important to know that liposuction is not a weight loss method and can’t substitute for a weight loss program or bariatric surgery. The procedure is performed for body remodeling purposes only and the weight loss expected after the procedure is minimal. There are different types of liposuction procedures. While the principle is the same for all of them and it entails the use of small cannulas that are introduced into the subcutaneous layer of fat and connected to a medical vacuum device, we can use a laser, ultrasound, dry or wet liposuction.