You’ve worked hard to stay in shape, but no amount of diet or exercise seems to affect those stubborn areas of fat on your stomach, thighs and waist. Many people have trouble eliminating stubborn fat due to a variety of factors including genetics, pregnancy and hormones. Liposuction is a minimally invasive surgical procedure used to remove stubborn fat from common problem areas, combining the effectiveness of more invasive procedures, such as a tummy tuck, with a smooth recovery and minimal downtime. It is a permanent fat removal solution that can help you sculpt, shape and contour your body. If you’ve decided to take control of your weight loss with liposuction, you may have some questions before your procedure. At New Reflections Plastic Surgery in Freehold, New Jersey, we believe that patients should be informed and prepared before any surgery, so we’ve put together a list of important things you should know before your liposuction procedure.
1. Liposuction is not a Shortcut or Weight Loss Procedure
Liposuction is a valuable tool plastic surgeons use to enhance or improve the appearance of problem areas. During your liposuction procedure, Dr. Patel will remove unwanted fat by inserting a hollow, tube-like tool called a cannula into small, strategically placed incisions. The cannula will be used to dislodge and vacuum out unwanted fat cells for a smoother, leaner physique. The goal of liposuction is to smooth and reshape the body, rather than help patients lose significant amounts of weight. Liposuction is best used to eliminate localized deposits of fat that are resistant to diet and exercise. Ideal candidates for liposuction are those who:
- Are within 30 percent of their weight goals
- Want to eliminate stubborn pockets of fat in target areas
- Have specific body contouring goals
- Are healthy enough for surgery
- Have good skin tone and elasticity
- Want to avoid more invasive procedures
- Have reasonable expectations and a positive outlook
It is also recommended that patients who receive liposuction do not smoke, as this can impede the body’s natural healing process. Areas that are most commonly treated with liposuction include the stomach, back, waist, thighs, arms and chin.
2. Downtime is Minimal
At New Reflections Plastic Surgery, Dr. Patel is renowned for his rapid recovery procedures and surgical technique. Usually performed under local anesthesia, your surgeon will make a few small incisions in strategic areas to insert the cannula. Unlike other procedures, scarring is extremely minimal and easy to conceal. After your procedure, you should expect some downtime, but patients can usually return to work after a few days with minimal swelling or bruising. You will likely feel sore, but any post-operative pain or discomfort can be easily managed with pain medications and plenty of rest. Immediately after your procedure, you should take it easy and focus on recovering. It is recommended that you wait two to three weeks before resuming strenuous activities such as exercise to let your body heal properly. You may be required to wear bandages or compression garments to aid the recovery process and optimize your results. Since each patient is different, your expected downtime and recovery will be discussed in detail during your consultation. After your procedure, Dr. Patel will provide you with post-operative instructions and schedule you for a follow-up appointment to ensure that everything is going well.
3. There are Different Kinds of Liposuction Available
At New Reflections Plastic Surgery, we believe that patients should have options when it comes to body contouring. We have recently added laser liposuction to better help patients reach their goals. Laser liposuction differs from traditional liposuction in a few ways. In addition to using suction to remove targeted fat cells, laser liposuction also uses heat to melt body fat. This makes fatty deposits easier to remove and reduces bruising and swelling. This technique also has the added benefit of stimulating collagen production to tighten and firm the skin, reducing the risk that sagging or laxity will occur. This procedure produces outstanding results when used in smaller areas that have some excess fat or loose skin. Larger areas can be treated with laser liposuction, but require a more intensive procedure and recovery period. Areas commonly treated with laser liposuction include the stomach, sides, inner or outer thighs, bra bulge and the chin. Recovery is generally easier with laser liposuction, although patients will be required to wear compression garments as directed by Dr. Patel. Any bruising or swelling will quickly resolve and most patients can expect to return to their daily routine within two to three days.
4. Liposuction has Limitations
Although liposuction can provide outstanding results for patients looking to eliminate stubborn fat from targeted areas, both traditional and laser liposuction have limitations. Neither procedure is ideal for removing large amounts of fat; ideal patients should be at or near their goal weight and have specific areas of concern. There are limits to how much fat can be safely removed in one procedure, which is why an experienced surgeon such as Dr. Patel is important. To produce flattering, natural-looking results, an understanding of anatomy and the ability to follow the contours of the body is essential.
It’s also important to remember that results may take time to develop. Traditional liposuction uses a tumescent technique that causes affected tissues to stiffen and swell, which may take a few weeks to subside. You may notice subtle changes as your results become more noticeable and the swelling diminishes. Laser liposuction and other modern techniques tend to have a quicker recovery and produce fewer side effects; patients often feel sore, similar to an intense workout, and can expect to be “bikini ready” sooner. At New Reflections, Dr. Patel uses a gentle, innovative technique to minimize swelling and bruising without sacrificing results, regardless of which liposuction procedure you choose.
5. You Won’t Regain Weight in Treated Areas
Liposuction is a permanent procedure. Once fat cells are removed or destroyed, they do not return. When we gain or lose weight, fat cells shrink and grow, but liposuction entirely removes some of these cells from your body. You are not immune to weight gain in general, however, making it important to maintain healthy habits such as diet and exercise. If you do regain weight, it will likely be evenly distributed throughout your body; your results will still be noticeable because treated areas will have less fat cells overall.
Liposuction is a great alternative for patients who want to avoid more invasive procedures such as a tummy tuck. When performed by a qualified, experienced surgeon, liposuction is a safe procedure with few risks or adverse side effects. Dr. Patel and his carefully selected team at New Reflections Plastic Surgery in Freehold, New Jersey, are dedicated to providing you with the highest quality of care to ensure beautiful, consistent results. If you’re ready to say goodbye to stubborn fat, contact or call us today at 732-354-3792!