Liposuction, When Diets & Exercise Don't Work For You

Liposuction or lipoplasty is one of the most commonly performed cosmetic surgery procedures and is used to quickly remove fatty tissue from problem areas in the body. Areas that are often targeted include the waist, thighs, hips, upper arms, buttocks, under the chin and even the back. General anesthesia is usually used as well. Both men and women are using this method to deal with areas of fatty tissue on the body that are resistant to exercise and dieting. And with advances in technology and technique, Chicago liposuction is a relatively safe procedure when performed by an experienced and qualified surgeon. Any kind of surgery involves certain risks and side effects though, so it's important to discuss these with your surgeon before making a decision about whether or not the procedure is right for you.

Wet Liposuction

One of the types commonly used is called wet liposuction. With this procedure, the patient is put under general anesthesia and a mixture of a local anesthetic and some other dissolving medication is injected throughout the area to receive liposuction. The patient will also be given general anesthesia. This mixture of fluids both dissolves the fatty tissue, making it easier to suction out with the cannula, and helps to minimize bleeding. You can also opt for what is called superwet liposuction, which is where a bigger amount of the fluid is injected into the tissues, making it possible to medically vacuum out the fat more quickly.

Tumescent Liposuction

In tumescent liposuction, the surgeon will inject the largest amount of fat dissolving and pain and blood loss reducing fluid into the patient. Because this method of liposuction injects the largest amount of medication and allows for the use of a smaller cannula to suction out the fat, the patient usually doesn't have to have general anesthesia. There is also less swelling and blood loss because of the larger amount of injection used, so patients can often go home sooner.

Ultrasound Liposuction

Ultrasound liposuction is probably the newest form of the procedure used. With ultrasonic liposuction, ultrasonic energy or impulses are used to break down and loosen the fat cells instead of an injection of medication. The fat is then suctioned out just like the other methods. There are internal and external ultrasound liposuction procedures, but the external is generally believed to be safer than the internal due to the possibility of organ, tissue or skin damage if the tube inserted vibrates to deeply.

Superficial Syringe Liposuction

With superficial syringe liposuction, the surgeon will use a syringe to suction out the fat, not a mechanical device. The positive aspects of this form of liposuction are that it causes very little bruising, swelling or blood loss compared to the more invasive methods. But the down side is that only fatty tissue close to the skin can be removed with the syringe since it is shorter than the cannula vacuum.

Smart Lipo

Smart Lipo is a kind of laser body sculpting procedure that is actually the only laser-assisted liposuction performed today. It works by using inserting a 1 to 2 mm tube into your skin that has a laser with a calibrated beam of light that reduces fat to liquid when slowly moved around. That liquid is then removed through small incisions in the skin. The laser also closes blood vessels as it liquifies fat, so you have less bleeding, bruising and swelling than with other lipo procedures. You also only need a local anesthetic.

The best candidates for Smart Lipo are people who are 25 pounds or less over weight and in good health. You can generally go back to work in a couple of days and your bandages come off in one to two weeks.

Vaser Liposuction

With Vaser Liposuction the surgeon uses ultrasonic or sound waves to break up fat cells. The fatty area to be treated will be injected with a special saline solution that will numb the tissue and shrink blood vessels to minimize bleeding. The surgeon will then make a few small incisions in the skin and insert small probes that will vibrate at a high frequency and break up the fat cells. The fat then combines with the saline solution and is suctioned out of your body. Recovery time depends on how large an area is treated. The smaller the fatty area, the quicker the recovery time. You can see results right after the procedure, but it will take three or four months for your skin to completely retract and become smooth.

Most liposuction procedures may be repeated as needed, and how often depends on the amount of fat to be removed and recovery time needed between procedures. Because the cannula can leave tunnels as it vacuums out the fat, there may be ridges or dimples in the body area where the liposuction was performed. These could smooth out in a few weeks, or if it was a large area, it could take nearly a year for the area to even out completely.

Recovery and Results

Recovery time varies as well, and although you will probably be able to leave shortly after the liposuction is done you will have to wait anywhere from a few days to up to two weeks to return to lifting or strenuous activities.

The results of liposuction are able to be seen relatively quickly, even though it may take weeks for the whole benefits to be seen. Liposuction isnít recommended as a long term solution to weight loss and works best in conjunction with other weight loss methods such as dieting and exercise. The best candidates are men and women who have good skin tone and are in good health. Liposuction isnít usually covered by health insurance because it is normally considered a cosmetic or elective surgery, so you need to discuss this with your surgeon.

Liposuction can be an excellent body enhancing procedure for the right patients. Finding an experienced surgeon and then picking out the type of liposuction that best suits your body can take some time, but your body is worth the effort.