Liposuction is one of the most popular types of cosmetic surgery with tens of thousands of procedures performed each year in the UK and London. For patients who are considering having a liposuction procedure, we have highlighted the most important aspects to help you be as prepared as possible for your procedure.
What is liposuction?
Liposuction or Lipo is a body contouring procedure for the removal of localised areas of fat under the skin in unwonted parts of the body that are proven resistant to diet and exercise. Liposuction is not a method weight loss and is considered the most effective technique for getting rid of fat that can’t be reduced with non-invasive methods such as reducing one’s intake of refined sugar and carrying out regular cardiovascular exercise.
What are the common liposuction areas?
Liposuction can be performed on most areas of the body including:
- Neck and chin lipo
- Back of the neck also known as a dorso-cervical fat pad or ‘Buffalo hump‘
- Abdomen and love handles
- Male chest
- Female breasts
- Upper arms also known as ‘bingo wings‘
- Stomach lipo
- Back lipo
- Bra rolls
- Thighs – both inner and outer thighs
- Calves and ankles
Liposuction can be carried out in more than one area and the treatment plan will depend on your expectations, your lifestyle and your genetics as many people will be predisposed to accumulating fat in certain body areas compared with others. Once your cosmetic surgeon has carried out a full clinical assessment including a physical examination, the best treatment option will be suggested.
Am I suitable for liposuction?
You will be an ideal candidate for liposuction if you are in a good state of health with no significant medical conditions. You are at or near your target weight and you do not smoke. Liposuction is designed to remove areas of fat beneath the skin also known as subcutaneous fat. The other type of fat found in the body is visceral fat which is commonly found around the internal abdominal organs such as the stomach and liver and if you have an excessive amount of visceral fat, it will be recommended for you to lose weight first as liposuction is not a treatment for getting rid of visceral fat.
As part of the clinical assessment, your surgeon will judge the quality of your skin including its elasticity before recommending liposuction. Patients with good skin elasticity are ideal candidates for liposuction. If patients have significant amounts of skin laxity or loose skin, your surgeon may recommend a skin removal procedure such as a tummy tuck as liposuction may worsen the appearance of loose skin.
Is liposuction good for weight loss?
Many people incorrectly assume they can lose weight with liposuction. Liposuction is the best treatment for people who are at or near their ideal body weight for the removal of localised areas of fat. The amount of fat that could be removed will depend on several variables including your treatment expectations and your surgeon’s assessment of the anticipated result.
How to prepare for the liposuction
Before your liposuction procedure, you will be given detailed preoperative instructions from our nursing team. On the day of your procedure, you will need a responsible adult escort to transport you to and from the day surgery facility and must be available to assist you with care for the first 24 hours after liposuction.
You will need to avoid certain drugs before the procedure including medicines that may thin the blood such as aspirin and certain anti-inflammatory medications. These medicines could increase the risk of bleeding complications during or after the procedure. If you are having liposuction to multiple areas, your surgeon may request certain blood tests to make sure you are not anaemic before surgery. If you are found to be anaemic, you may be prescribed iron tablets. On the day of your surgery, you should not eat anything for six hours beforehand and can have clear fluids up to 2 hours before the procedure.
How is fat removal surgery carried out?
Liposuction is a minimally invasive procedure which involves making small skin incisions to permit the insertion of aspiration cannulas into the area of excess fat. The cannulas are then moved back and forth to gently break apart fat cells before being sucked out with vacuum suction. Once the procedure is complete, the skin incisions will be closed with dissolvable sutures. There is no need to have the sutures removed at subsequent follow-up appointments as they will be absorbed naturally by the body. Here at Centre for Surgery, all of our liposuction procedures are carried out as an outpatient or day case which means that you will be admitted and discharged on the same day which will allow you to recover in the comfort of your own home.
What does liposuction recovery involve?
The vast majority of patients who have had liposuction can return to nonphysical types of work in approximately 48 to 72 hours. The recovery process takes anywhere between three days and four weeks after which time you may return to all your normal activities including going to the gym.
The speed of your recovery will be dependent on how your body heals with some patients able to carry out any type of exercise for seven days while other patients may need four weeks or more. Your liposuction recovery will also depend on where that has been removed from. 360 liposuction may be associated with a longer recovery period compared with liposuction carried out in a single area such as the upper arms.
What do liposuction scars look like?
The width of the incisions is just long enough to allow the insertion of the small-diameter liposuction cannulas and these are often no more than 3 to 4 mm. The resulting liposuction scar is barely noticeable and the number of scars you have will depend on how many areas of liposuction you had carried out. The appearance of scars will also vary depending on how old you are and your level of skin elasticity. Many patients have virtually no visible scarring while other people may have more obvious scars, especially in darker skin types. It is important to remember that incisions result in some degree of scarring. The only way to avoid liposuction scars is not to have liposuction surgery.
What liposuction results can I expect?
All patients should have realistic expectations of what to achieve with liposuction and this will allow them to form an accurate idea of potential liposuction results. After the procedure, it is common to have bruising and swelling which will settle down after two weeks. You may also have loose skin which will take time to improve over the first few weeks. Final liposuction results take approximately six weeks and three months to appear. It is important to be patient throughout the liposuction recovery period and follow your surgeon’s post-operative instructions in full.
SEE ALSO: Liposuction Before And After Photos
Are liposuction results permanent?
Fat cells that have been removed from the body with liposuction are gone forever and do not return. However, patients who continue to eat a healthy diet can still gain weight in other areas which have not had liposuction. The best way to maintain your results is to eat a healthy diet and carry out regular physical exercise to ensure you get the very best long-term results.
Book your London liposuction procedure today
Once you have made up your mind and are ready to take the next step, get in touch with us today on 0207 993 4849 to book a face-to-face consultation with an expert liposuction surgeon in London.