Liposuction is ideal for people with areas of stubborn fat that do not respond to diet and exercise. These contour deformities can be sculpted to match the surrounding body by suctioning unwanted fat cells. Liposuction results in permanent removal of fatty tissue. The most common areas treated by liposuction are the abdomen, hips, thighs, love handles, back, knees, upper arms, and chin.
Liposuction Initial Evaluation
At the initial consultation, your health history will be reviewed and the procedure you are interested in will be explained in great detail. Any alternative procedures, as well as the risks and benefits of surgery will be discussed. You will view before and after photographs of Dr. Lawton’s patients, and all of your questions will be answered.
During the examination, your body contours including skin excess, fatty deposits, and muscular tone will be evaluated. You will have the opportunity to point out particular characteristics of your anatomy that you would like to improve or change.
After an extensive discussion, you and Dr. Lawton will arrive at the surgical plan that will best achieve your goals. It is our commitment that you leave this initial visit with a clear understanding of your surgical options, so you may make an informed decision. We are happy to answer any questions you may think of later by telephone, email, or at another private consultation. There is never an additional charge for these subsequent visits.
It is common to perform liposuction of the abdomen, hips, and thighs together. This treats the body as one aesthetic unit, giving the best overall results. Of course this depends on your anatomy. It is possible that only parts of the body require treatment. If these areas are small, it may be possible to do arms, knees, or under the chin at the same time. If the contours are large, it may not be possible to do more than just one area. The surgery is personalized for your goals and anatomy.
Surgery (Tumescent technique)
Liposuction is performed in our own private AAAASF Certified Class-C Outpatient Surgical Center. The procedure takes about 1 hour per area to be treated. The tumescent technique is used for liposuction. The tumescent fluid contains epinephrine to decrease the risks of bleeding and bruising, and lidocaine to decrease the amount of anesthesia needed during surgery. The lidocaine also provides pain relief after surgery.
For this outpatient procedure, we utilize general intravenous anesthesia administered by an elite group of carefully selected, highly qualified, board certified anesthesiologists. The techniques employed are designed to provide a smooth, gentle anesthetic experience, and prevent postoperative nausea and eliminate postoperative pain. This type of anesthesia allows me to feather the areas that are being treated, creating a smooth transition into the surrounding contours, without causing you any pain.
The liposuction cannulae are 3.7 mm, 4 mm, 4.6 mm, and 5 mm in diameter. Which ones are used depends on the amount of fat, the condition of the skin, the area being suctioned, the character of the fat, and the amount of fibrous tissue. The wounds are just large enough to allow passage of the cannulae. The incisions are hidden in areas that are inconspicuous.
Rest is recommended after surgery. At home, you will have medications to ease the pain. We also prescribe antibiotics to reduce the risk of infection. A special compression garment, surgical vitamins, arnica, and bromelain are used to reduce the swelling and bruising, and to speed your recovery.
We will see you in the office the day after surgery. By the fourth or fifth day, the discomfort should be significantly reduced. At one week, you will return for suture removal. By this time, you should be feeling well enough to be back to most of your normal activities. You should be back to work within the first week. Because it takes 6 weeks before the wounds reach 50% of their full strength, you will be able to return to vigorous activities only after this healing period.
We will see you in follow-up at 1 day, 1 week, 1 month, 3 months, 6 months, and every year thereafter. We will see you more frequently if necessary. There are never charges for follow-up visits.
The success of liposuction is measured by changes in contour. You may also lose some weight and get into smaller size clothing, although this varies based on your anatomy. The fat removal is permanent. You must have healthy eating and exercise habits to maintain your results. If you do gain weight after liposuction, the localized fat deposits that existed prior to surgery should not grow out of proportion to the surrounding areas.