Liposuction FAQ

Can cellulite be treated with liposuction?
The procedure is not deliberately used to treat cellulite, however liposuction has been known to even out some quantity of cellulite. Endermologie is a more effective treatment of cellulite.

Are the results of liposuction permanent and if not how long does it last?
Keeping healthy by exercising and eating right can prolong the results of liposuction, therefore the procedure is not a substitute for keeping fit and following a diet. By gaining a great deal of weight, the areas from which cellulite was removed may come back.

Will I need to wear a girdle while I recover?
Some form of compression garment, similar to a girdle, is typically required to be worn by a patient for up to 2 weeks. The garment is used to help lower the danger of hematomas and fluid collection, as well as decrease swelling and to support the area that was treated.

Does insurance cover liposuction?
Lioposuction is usually not covered by insurance, but they may cover some of the costs if liposuction was used for reducing the breasts for instance. You should verify with your insurance company what type of coverage you can receive for this type of procedure.

What does power-assisted liposuction mean?
A pretty new method of liposuction is called Power-assisted, which is when a vibrating cannula is used rather than a manual cannula.

Power-assisted liposuction is a fairly new technique using a cannula that vibrates rather than one that is physically controlled. The vibrating cannula disrupts and releases the fat cells that surround the tissue before they are suctioned out. There are less complications with power-assisted liposuction, as well as accurate sculpting, less significant incisions, a shorter surgical time, and not as much trauma to the surrounding tissues.

What is the recovery time after liposuction?
Recovery time is different depending on each patient. Typically, returning back to work after one or two weeks is the norm for most patients. Strenuous activities, though, should be delayed for two to four weeks.

What regions of the body can I have liposuction?
Many areas of the face and body can receive liposuction. The common areas are the cheeks, chin, neck, upper arms, abdomen, hips, buttocks, thighs, knees, calves, and ankles.

What type of anesthesia is used?
General anesthesia, local anesthesia, or an epidural may be used when performing liposuction.

What does ultrasound-assisted liposuction mean?
Known as UAL or ultrasonic liposuction, ultrasound-assisted liposuction is a technique that utilizes an ultrasound probe to melt the fat prior suctioning it out. The method is coupled with a lower amount of bruising and swelling which happens after surgery. It is longer than the conventional method as a UAL can take anywhere from 1 ½ to 3 ½ hours to finalize. However, it does have an possibility of thermal burn.

What is tumescent liposuction?
The Tumescent liposuction procedure uses a large amount of fluid that holds saline and lidocaine. The fluid is then inserted into the fatty tissues prior to the fat being suctioned out causing them to swell and turn firm or ‘tumesced’. A local anesthesia is usually required. The outcome of the method has the following benefits: more defined results, less recovery time, reduced post-operative swelling and bruising.

The tumescent liposuction can be longer than the general liposuction procedure. as much as four to five hours long to complete. Furthermore, the risk of fluid collection in the lungs and lidocaine toxicity can occur.

Does liposuction have any risks?
Liposuction carries some risks, as with any type of surgical procedure. They may consist of unevenness, looseness or wrinkling of the skin; fluid retention, infection, pigmentation changes, skin damage, and extreme loss of fluid that can lead to shock. While tumescent liposuction can carry the additional risk of fluid collection in the lungs and lidocaine toxicity, UAL can carry an additional risk of thermal burn injury.

Can liposuction be performed on the face?
Yes, liposuction can be used to treat areas of the face. The most common areas that are treated are the cheeks, chin and neck.

What is a cannula?
Used during a liposuction procedure, a cannula is a blunt-tipped, slender tube that is placed into tiny openings in the skin and then manipulated to disturb the fat cells before they are removed.

How long is liposuction surgery?
The common liposuction usually takes between 1 and 2 hours to complete, but if there are bigger or various other areas to treat then the procedure can be longer. However, the surgery can be about 4 to 5 hours long for ultrasound assisted liposuction and tumescent liposuction.

If I gain weight after liposuction, will it hinder my results?
Yes, gaining weight can cause the fat that was once removed to come back again. If you foresee yourself gaining a great deal of weight (such as a pregnancy) then you should seriously reconsider liposuction and reschedule for a later date.

How painful is liposuction?
Patients may experience a different amount or extent of pain; however the majority of individuals find liposuction find discomfort more than hurting. Your doctor can prescribe a pain medicine that can help reduce any uneasiness that you may have. Keep in mind that the most recent methods ( UAL and tumescent) have the benefit of less pain.

Can loose skin be treated with liposuction?
Liposuction consists of the removing of fat and to some extent, loose skin could be reduced with liposuction if the skin is being pulled downwards by the fat. Nonetheless, the procedure is not typically used to treat loose skin. Actually, loose skin can at times seem more obvious when the underlying fat is eliminated. Other treatments, such as a facelift or tummy tuck, can be used in combination with liposuction to better treat loose skin.

What exactly is rippling?
When the skin looks like it has faint waves on it or looks rippled, that is the result, simply put, Rippling. The result of rippling can happen when the fat is eliminated and the skin does not fully agree to its new figure. This result is not typical; however in most cases when it does, the patent is nevertheless satisfied with the results.

What makes a person the best candidate for liposuction?
An individual that is in good shape and of normal body weight, but who has stubborn areas that refuse to go away with exercise and diet, such as ‘saddlebags’ on women or ‘love handles’ on men, make the best candidates for liposuction.


"I would like to start off by first saying that I have enjoyed my experience here at Spalding Plastic surgery. You might be asking yourself; how could someone enjoy having surgery? Well the staff has made me feel at home and have been some of the kindest people I have ever met PERIOD." —Manuel
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