Body Contouring and Liposuction
Liposuction can benefit both men and women. In men, fat often accumulates along the belt-line as “love handles”. Women, on the other hand, are more likely to develop excess fat on the hips, inner thighs, buttocks and abdomen. Other common sites include the neck, arms, knees, calves and ankles. At Silkwood Medical in Bondi Junction, in Sydney, we offer body contouring and liposuction techniques for these common problem areas.
The Liposuction Procedure
Liposuction varies from the removal of small, localised fat deposits to lipectomy of large areas. Your surgeon will evaluate your body and discuss with you the techniques available. With all forms of liposuction a vacuum pump sucks out unwanted fat via a thin metal tube from an area of localised body fat, leaving a flattened area. Suction assisted lipectomy may be performed under general or local anaesthesia with sedation depending on the extent of the body contouring procedure and your requests. Scars are avoided by working through small incisions in your natural skin folds.
Recovery from Liposuction Body Contouring
The extent of the procedure and speed of your recovery depends on the number of treated areas and the amount of fat removed. Bruising can last from one to three weeks and swelling can persist for one to two months. A compression garment is usually worn for two to six weeks after body contouring surgery.
Frequently Asked Questions
Liposuction has become the most common procedure performed by cosmetic plastic surgeons. It has helped thousands of men and women eliminate unwanted fat and achieve body proportions in harmony with their overall build. However, liposuction is not a substitute for weight reduction, but a method of removing localised fat that is resistant to dieting and exercise.
What is the largest volume that can possibly be removed by liposuction?
It used to be considered that removing three litres was a large volume of liposuction. However, over the years with various developments in improving the safety of liposuction, it is now possible to remove up to 10 litres without any changes in the safety of the procedure when performed by a trained cosmetic plastic surgeon in conjunction with an experienced anaesthetist. In certain circumstances, with strict attention to safeguards, large volumes up to 15 litres can be removed. However, liposuction and body contouring is not a substitute for a healthy diet and exercise, so this is only done in very rare cases.
What is the difference between liposuction and liposculpture?
Nothing. Liposculpture is a made-up word used to suggest attention to detail and concern with relative shapes and overall body proportion on the part of the surgeon. Every single form of liposuction has in common the administration of a wetting solution, an incision and suction of fat through a metal tube attached to a vacuum.
I have read about tumescent liposuction and the improved shape possible from this. How do I know if I am suitable for this?
Tumescent liposuction (where the area to be suctioned is filled so tight it is almost at bursting point) involves the administration of large volumes of local anaesthetic and fluid to pump up the areas to be suctioned. There is no evidence that tumescent liposuction is of any benefit at all in terms of improved shape. Tumescent liposuction is in fact very rarely used as there appears to be no advantage over the super wet or wet techniques of liposuction where a slightly smaller volume of fluid containing local anaesthetic is used to pump up the areas to be suctioned.
Is it possible to remove fat from my thighs by liposuction and re-inject it into my breasts to increase my breast size?
The combination of small breasts and large thighs is very common. It is a fond hope of many people that the fat removed from their thighs in liposuction could be used to augment their breasts with their own tissue instead of using breast implants. Over the years techniques have been developed which can allow fat to be reliably transfered to the breasts. However this procedure is still controversial and the many pros and cons need to be discussed with the individual. The technical reason why the fat is unable to survive when injected into the breast tissue is that the breast consists largely of fat with a very poor blood supply so that the injected fat is unable to develop a new blood supply and therefore fades away.
If I have liposuction in summer, how long is it until I’m able to go to the beach?
Usually there is some bruising after body contouring surgery and this varies with each individual. In some cases where there is hardly any bruising it would be possible to go swimming and to the beach within seven to 10 days. However it is more likely to be at least two to three weeks.
Can people see the incisions used in liposuction?
Incisions used by our surgeons in liposuction are generally less than 5mm in length and we do try to hide them in natural body creases. Generally the incisions are so small they don’t even need stitches and are held closed with tape only. At first the incisions are red but within two to three weeks they usually resemble an old mosquito bite. It often takes several months for the colour to fade. It is highly unlikely that other people would notice these incisions even at the beach or in any close-up situation.
What form of liposuction is best for removing cellulite?
Unfortunately, despite many claims, there is no form of liposuction known to decrease cellulite.
Is ultrasonic liposuction better?
Ultrasonic liposuction has a place in the practice of liposuction. All liposuction has as its core infiltration of the area to be suctioned with fluid containing local anaesthetic and a blood vessel constrictor, an incision and removal of fat via a thin metal tube attached to a vacuum. The only difference with ultrasonic liposuction is that the fat is initially emulsified by high frequency sound waves. This may be useful in the enlarged male breast (gynaecomastia), in large volume liposuction for the morbidly obese, in the upper back and upper abdomen in women and in areas of repeat liposuction. There appears to be no particular advantage and indeed several outstanding disadvantages to the use of ultrasonic liposuction in the initial routine liposuction of the vast majority of people.
After liposuction, does the fat stay off? I have heard that after liposuction the fat will go to other areas of the body?
As long as you maintain a normal diet and do not rapidly gain kilograms it is exceedingly difficult to put weight back onto areas that have had liposuction. There is no evidence if you have had liposuction of the thighs that if you gain weight, it will all go to one unusual area such as the neck or arms. Our surgeons have found that after body contouring, usually any weight gain will be relatively distributed throughout the body beneath the skin, thereby avoiding any bizarre contour changes.
How long should you use compression garments after liposuction?
Recent studies have shown that the major benefit of wearing compression garments after liposuction is that patients feel more comfortable and secure. There is very little evidence that the garments will actually make any difference in either the short or long term outcome of the liposuction. Postoperative massage of the areas that have been suctioned either by yourself or by a trained massage therapist is far more likely to be effective in diminishing swelling and prompting the quickest return to your desired body contour.
Interested in Liposuction and Body Contouring?
Our surgeons offer liposuction and body contouring treatments to help local and international patients achieve a slimmer and more toned appearance. Contact Silkwood Medical in Sydney today to discover how you can benefit from liposuction treatment.