Liposuction (Lipoplasty)

What is Liposuction?

Body contouring or liposuction is designed for those who have specific areas with fat deposits and have tried unsuccessfully to eliminate them through diet, exercise or weight loss programs. Body contouring removes fat cells beneath the skin in order to improve the shape of those areas.

The procedure can be performed nearly any place on the body and has proven particularly effective in the abdomen, waist, hips and thighs. It can also be used on the arms, buttocks, knees and ankles. Body contouring is suitable for both men and women who are in good health.

Is Liposuction right for me?

In consultation, Dr. Tuan considers the objectives of the clients, their problem areas, and the patient's skin elasticity before making are commendation for body contouring. The results of liposuction are often remarkable, but it is unrealistic to expect perfection. Clients should presume that the irregularities and dimpling of the skin present before body contouring are likely to remain following the procedure. While improving the overall shape of the body, the procedure usually does not improve cellulite.

How is Liposuction performed?

Body contouring is performed as an outpatient procedure at our Surgical Center under general anesthesia. Prior to the procedure, the areas to be treated are carefully marked to guide the surgeon during surgery. Cannulas are inserted through very small adits, or holes in the skin to suction out excess fat. Scarring from these ports usually becomes imperceptible over time.

Dr. Tuan only uses the latest liposuction techniques. These improved body contouring techniques require Dr. Tuan to inject moderate amounts of fluid into the targeted areas before removing fatty deposits. The fluid contains agents designed to limit blood loss and reduce discomfort. This technique also makes the recovery period much easier. A further innovation in liposuction is the use of very fine cannulas. These cannulas allow the surgeon to use tiny punctures instead of an incision and allow him to approach fat tissue from many sites and directions. The final result is a smoother surgical outcome with a more rapid recovery.

What can I expect after Liposuction?

The fat that is removed during body contouring cannot return. This is not to say that one cannot gain weight following surgery. A weight gain following this procedure results in a more generalized heaviness with fewer predispositions for fat deposits in the treated areas. Body contouring is usually not an appropriate treatment for obesity and is no substitute for good nutrition and regular exercise. However, obese clients maybe suitable candidates for body liposuction if their goal is simply a reduction in body size when combined with weight gain control. Patients must be in good health and committed to avoid significant weight gain.

The patient will wear an elastic garment after their surgical procedure(s). These garments may be removed 48 hours after surgery so they may shower and wash and dry the garments. After showering, the garments are replaced and worn day and night for the next four to six days. Some patients may need to wear the garments longer after their surgery. Many choose to wear them longer because of the comfort they provide.

A moderate volume of fluid drains from the puncture sites during the first24 to 72 hours following surgery. In general, if there is more drainage, there will be less bruising and swelling. Massaging and/or therapeutic ultrasound treatments after body contouring may be beneficial to the overall outcome.

Certain activities are restricted to aid healing. However, most liposuction patients were able to engage in light activity the day after surgery. Most normal activity can be resumed within a week or so but soreness should be expected. Exposure to the sun is to be avoided during healing because it may darken the small, maturing scars.

Once the excess fat is removed, the body takes several months to tighten the loose skin, provided the patient's skin has not lost the ability to do so.(Liposuction results are dependent on good skin contracture.) This process begins in two to four weeks and progresses slowly. The best results from body contouring show in six to twelve months following the procedure and can be greatly enhanced if the patient continues to lose weight through diet and exercise.