Dating from as far back as from the 1960s, liposuction is one of the most common aesthetic surgeries performed every year with a total of 1,268,287 US citizens undergoing it in 2011. This surgical operation involves the removal of fat from certain parts of the body like the abdomen, thighs, buttocks and arms. The main purpose is not to get fitter or healthier but rather attain the desired body shape.
During early years, crude instruments and methods were used to perform liposuction and the risk was quite high. But over the last several decades major improvements have been achieved and today, the risk of the operation has drastically reduced.
Best Candidates for Liposuction
Not everyone should undergo a liposuction. Certain things like smoking, ill health and obesity can pose a major risk to the patient. The ideal candidate for a liposuction should:
Be in good general health with no serious health conditions such as diabetes and heart disease.
Be in good overall body fitness. This means having a regular exercise regimen and a good dietary habit.
Have a goal of getting read of fat pockets in certain parts of the body which do not respond to dieting and regular exercise.
Not be obese. It is important to understand that obesity is not a problem solved through liposuction.
Surprisingly, age is not a major factor when it comes to qualifying for a liposuction. As long as you are an individual who is healthy and fit you will most probably qualify. But due to the lower skin elasticity, do not expect results as good as those of younger individuals.
The most important thing is to discuss at length, your intention to get a liposuction with a cosmetic surgeon. He or she will advice you on it and determine whether there is anything that increases surgical risk or prevents you from getting the operation done.
Operation, Risks and Recovery
Depending on the situation, the surgeon may decide to use Tumescent or ultrasound assisted liposuction. In tumescent liposuction a solution is injected into the fatty areas before the operation begins. This solution helps reduce the amount of blood lost, eases the operation and helps in quicker and less painful recovery. Ultrasound assisted liposuction involves the fat is first liquefied using ultrasonic energy and then removed.
The recovery takes around 2 weeks. Some changes may be noticed as the swelling resulting from the operation subsides. But it may take up to 6 months for real results to appear. Side effects to expect after the procedure include bruising, swelling, scars, pain and numbness. In serious cases, complications may arise. These complications include infection of the affected area, allergic reaction to medication, skin discoloration, skin necrosis, an uneven skin contour and damage to an internal body organ.
With modern technology and acquired skills, most of the mentioned complications happen rarely and you should not be worried as long as you talk to a doctor first and get the right qualified surgeon to perform the operation.
Effectiveness of Liposuction
Liposuction is a very effective form of targeted fat removal. The fat is permanently removed and even with later gain weight, fat does not grow back in those areas that were operated on.