Liposuction is a body contouring procedure that removes fat under the skin to address trouble spots throughout the body.
Traditionally liposuction has been used to tweak areas resistant to exercise such as the love handles, the lower abdomen, the neck, and the buttock. Liposuciton is performed through small access incisions hidden in inconspicuous areas. Because of this, the recovery is relatively quick compared to more invasive surgery, and the restrictions after surgery are few.
Unfortunately, however, liposuction does not have the ability to address any excess skin laxity. The overall success of the procedure depends on the skin retracting back after the fat is removed. The ideal candidates are young patients with good quality, elastic skin. In patients where the skin does not retract, a skin tightening procedure can be performed to address the excess loose skin.
An alternative use of liposuction is as a debulking procedure during weight loss to “jump start” the process of slimming down. This procedure results in a modest weight loss and an incremental improvement in contour that helps motivate patients to continue losing weight through dieting and exercise.
Compared to traditional liposuction, debulking liposuction focuses on performing the procedure quickly with large cannulas to remove as much fat as possible in as short a time as possible. This change in focus keeps OR and anesthesia time down and, therefore, significantly reduces cost. There is less attention paid to fine contour refinement and, therefore, patients must accept that there may be contour irregularities that may need further tweaking with contour focused liposuction or surgery in the future.
As with any body contouring surgery, realistic expectations are important. A detailed examination and an in-depth discussion with Dr. David Tauber at DeLuca Plastic Surgery will help delineate the best surgical options.