What Exactly is Liposuction And is it Right For Me?
One of the most frequent questions I get in my practice is liposuction – exactly what it is and whether it is the right choice for your individual needs. Liposuction, also known as lipoplasty or suction lipectomy, reshapes and streamlines body areas by removing unwanted fat from specific areas. These problem areas include the abdomen, hips, buttocks, back, arms, thighs, knees, calves, ankles, upper arms, cheeks, love handles, breasts including male breast enlargement, saddlebags, and the neck.
While liposuction is not a substitute for a healthy diet and exercise, it can eliminate those stubborn areas of fat that don’t seem to respond to traditional weight-loss methods. Refinements to the procedure during the past decade have helped to provide more precise results and shorter recovery times. Liposuction is equally effective in both men and women.
Liposuction surgery usually improves contours. Since the healing process is gradual, you should expect to wait at least several months to get an accurate picture of the results of your surgery. The small incisions will fade over a number of months, usually becoming barely visible. The results of liposuction surgery are usually long-lasting, but they may be affected by further weight gain, aging, pregnancy and other lifestyle factors.
How Liposuction Surgery is Performed
The basic technique of liposuction involves the removal of fat via a hollow metal tube (cannula) that is passed through the fatty tissue. One of the most common types of liposuction is known as suction assisted liposuction (SAL) which involves the aspiration of fat by attaching a pump that generates a vacuum. In addition, a motor may be used on the cannula that causes the cannula to vacillate back and forth thus performing much of the “work” of liposuction know as power assisted liposuction (PAL). An ultrasonic generator may produce sound waves above audible frequency that “breaks” the fat cells and the broken down fat is removed by SAL. A laser can also be employed to break down the fat cells. Each of the methods has advantages and disadvantages. I’ll discuss each with you at the time of the consultation to customize the best approach for you. Additionally, the above techniques may be combined to yield optimal results.
Recovery from Liposuction Surgery
Naturally, the amount of time it takes to recover varies greatly among individuals. The first few days after surgery, you will need to rest and keep the affected body part elevated if possible. You will not be able to take aspirin or certain anti-inflammatory medications. You most likely will wear a compression garment and you may experience varying degrees of swelling and bruising during the first 48 hours following surgery, Bruising typically disappears within seven to ten days and stitches are usually removed within a week of surgery. Straining, bending over and lifting should be avoided during the early postoperative period. In many instances, you can resume most of your normal activities within ten days or less.
Your Consultation with Dr. Rottman
During your consultation, Dr. Rottman will discuss whether you are a good candidate for liposuction, your expectations, and what to expect during and after the procedure. Please contact us to schedule your appointment at either of our convenient Baltimore locations.