What is Liposuction?
One of the most popular cosmetic procedures for both men and women, liposuction is the classic way to reshape and contour areas of your body to achieve a slimmer, more proportionate physique. Even with a commitment to healthy habits, diet, and exercise, the struggle is real — our bodies have a tendency to accumulate and store stubborn, unwanted fat over time that can be resistant to lifestyle changes.
Fortunately, there is a tried-and-true method for removing stubborn problem areas: liposuction. With lipo, patients are able to target trouble spots including the abdomen, hips, waist, back, thighs, knees, buttocks, arms and more. Surgical fat removal remains one of the top plastic surgeries performed in the United States each year because of the dramatic results it produces and its ability to help patients achieve an aesthetic that is sometimes impossible to get any other way. After having their liposuction procedure, many patients feel more confident, notice clothing fits better, and are even more committed to maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Liposuction at Clevens Face and Body Specialists in Melbourne, FL, is performed by expert board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Amy Simon.
Eating Clean, Rigorous Workouts, and Stubborn Fat
Many disciplined patients begin to feel exasperated when their dedication to health and fitness does not result in aesthetic changes to the body, but keep in mind genetics greatly influence the way fat is stored and maintained. Hormones and gender are two important factors that lead to stubborn body fat. The more weight a person gains, the more difficult it can be to get rid of extra pounds due to increases in estrogen and cortisol. Women also have a higher percentage of body fat than men, and may have to work especially hard for visible results. Additionally, weight tends to shed evenly from the body as a whole, which is why some areas may never see total sculpting results without plastic surgery.
If you are interested in learning more about liposuction, the best way to get all the facts and find out if you are a candidate is to schedule a consultation with Dr. Simon at her Melbourne, FL practice. This first step toward liposuction surgery provides the opportunity for you to meet face-to-face with the doctor and discuss your unique goals. Dr. Simon will discuss with you the various areas of the body that may be improved through liposculpture, and assess the elasticity of the skin. During this initial appointment, the doctor will also review your health history and answer any questions you have.
You will also find out if you are a good candidate for liposuction, and Dr. Simon will explain the procedure in great detail, including the different types of fat removal that are possible with Clevens Face and Body Specialists. The doctor utilizes the following techniques, which can be performed alone or together for maximum impact:
The tumescent version of liposuction is considered the standard in modern liposculpture. During the procedure, a solution is injected into the fat which provides numbing and constricts the blood vessels to better control bleeding. The fatty tissue swells and becomes firmer during this process, which provides optimal conditions for its removal.
While lasers are often used in cosmetic medicine for skin rejuvenation, laser-assisted lipolysis can also be used for procedures like Smartlipo. When the cannula is inserted under the skin, a laser gains access through the hollow tube and liquefies the fat for removal. The laser heat causes a remodeling of area tissues, which will become tighter as a result of the treatment.
Dr. Simon will also go over alternatives or additional procedures that may benefit you. In some cases, fat removal is the sole aesthetic concern while in others, it addresses just one of many issues. Liposuction can be performed as part of a more comprehensive makeover, alongside procedures like tummy tuck surgery or mastopexy (breast lift). It can also supplement surgeries like a thigh lift.
Once your options have been explored, the discussion will cover pre-surgical care to help minimize risks, and some important information on post-surgical care.
The Liposuction Procedure
Liposuction is a body contouring plastic surgery that involves a few different steps during the fat-removal process. Before the surgery, Dr. Simon may create surgical markings on a patient’s body that help to guide her through the procedure and address each of the patient’s concerns. Generally, this is performed while the patient is standing.
Next, the patient is provided with anesthesia. There are different forms of medication administered for the various types of plastic surgery procedures, but general anesthesia or a combination of local anesthesia and a sedative are most common during liposuction. Either form of anesthesia ensures the patient is comfortable and provides the necessary pain medications for surgery. Because targeting resistant fat can require some manipulation and repositioning of the body, a surgical team will assist Dr. Simon during liposuction.
After the patient is anesthetized, Dr. Simon will create incisions in the skin that serve as access points for the cannula, which is the thin, hollow tube that suctions out fat below the skin. Often, the surgical incisions can be hidden in natural creases and crevices of the body or areas generally covered by a bathing suit or underwear. Next, the cannula enters through the skin, reaching the fatty tissue layer, and suctions away extra fat. The fat may have been pre-treated with a solution in tumescent liposuction or melted with heat in laser-assisted liposuction.
Once the fat removal portion of the procedure has been completed, the treated areas are cleansed and the doctor sutures the incisions closed. The benefit of Dr. Simon performing this step during an elective surgery is that she is trained in preserving the skin and reducing scar tissue. Compression garments will be fashioned over the areas of fat removal to reduce swelling and bleeding of the site.
Liposuction is performed on an outpatient basis, and once awake from surgery, patients are discharged to their home to rest and recover. A friend or family member will need to drive the patient home. Prescription medications that have been pre-filled can alleviate discomfort. The compression garments placed after the surgery may remain for up to four weeks.
Within the next several weeks, bruising and swelling will begin to subside, though residual swelling can linger. It is safe for most patients to return to work after a week, but they should avoid strenuous activities for six weeks. Dr. Simon takes care with incisions to minimize and conceal scars, which tend to fade over time.
After healing from liposuction surgery, many patients notice they have a sleeker silhouette, a more proportionate figure, and their clothing fits better. The procedure can result in both physical and psychological benefits, as in many cases, a patient’s self-esteem and self-confidence improves tremendously.
The people in your office are really a team of professionals that make a patient feel cared for.
Can liposuction replace weight loss surgery?
Liposuction is primarily recommended for healthy patients who have areas of stubborn fat that have been resistant to diet and exercise. Liposuction is not for the purpose of losing weight.
Bariatric weight loss surgery is performed by specialists for patients whose weight poses a serious health risk. Fat is not removed from the body, but the stomach pouch is dramatically decreased to limit the amount of food a person is able to consume. In some cases, body lifting procedures may be performed after the patient has reached and maintained a healthy weight, and some procedures include liposuction as part of the process.
What happens to extra skin after liposuction?
As patients gain weight, the layers of fat that accumulate below the skin cause the skin to stretch and accommodate the expanding area. After fat removal surgery, there may be some skin laxity in the treatment areas. Laser-assisted liposuction can tighten the skin while removing fat, addressing both concerns during a single procedure. Additionally, procedures like tummy tuck and thigh lift can combine surgical skin removal along with liposuction.
Can more than one area of the body be liposuctioned during a single surgery?
In some cases, patients can undergo liposuction to multiple areas of the body, but it will depend on their weight. The anesthesia that is necessary during the procedure must be provided in specific amounts based upon a person’s weight, and it may not be safe to complete liposuction of multiple areas if anesthesia cannot be safely delivered to them. Additionally, there is a maximum amount of fat removal that is generally accepted as safe during a procedure. Because of these reasons, it may be safest to perform liposuction in more than one procedure.
Does liposuction reduce the appearance of cellulite?
Liposuction does not reduce the appearance of cellulite, and there may be more appropriate options that better disguise the appearance of dimpled skin. Cellulite rarely occurs in men and is visible in most women due to the differing structures within the body. Dr. Simon may recommend some nonsurgical options that can aid in cellulite reduction.
How much does liposuction cost?
The investment in a liposuction procedure varies depending on a patient’s unique cosmetic goals and treatment plan. During your consultation at Clevens Face and Body Specialists, you will have an opportunity to work in partnership with Dr. Simon to develop a customized liposuction treatment plan that is designed to help you get the outcome you desire. Your Patient Care Coordinator will then review your quote with you and discuss financing options if you wish.
Can fat removal be performed without surgery?
Yes, it can. Clevens Face and Body Specialists offers nonsurgical body contouring treatments at their Melbourne, FL practice. Each session permanently reduces up to 25% of stubborn fat in the treated area, and the destroyed fat cells are naturally eliminated by the body. Popular areas to treat include tummy, flanks or love handles, thighs, buttocks, chin, arms, back, and the bra roll.
About Dr. Simon of Clevens Face and Body Specialists
Amy Simon, MD is a practicing plastic surgeon in Melbourne, FL who has been an expert in breast surgery and body contouring for more than two decades. The doctor holds herself to the highest patient standards, and has won multiple awards. Dr. Simon operates using innovative methods with proven results and the latest advancements in aesthetic medicine. Board certified and trained in two fellowships, Dr. Simon’s credentials are unmatched in the Melbourne area. The doctor has educated others through international publications, peer-reviewed journal articles, and media appearances.
Contact Dr. Simon at Clevens Face and Body Specialists at (321) 312-1365, or schedule a meeting with her though the online Consultation Form.