In 2013, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons reported that liposculpting, or liposuction, was among the top five cosmetic procedures performed by surgeons. With its continuing rise in popularity comes a great deal of misleading and exaggerated information. To give you a more accurate perspective on liposculpting, here is the truth about the most common myths surrounding liposculpting and how we perform it here at Basile Plastic Surgery.
Myth #1: Liposculpting Is a Weight-Loss Tool
This is by far the biggest misconception out there. Many people believe that if they are overweight, liposculpting is a simple solution to the problem. Just zap the fat, suck it out and you’ll find yourself at a healthy weight again.
The truth is that liposculpting is meant to contour your body, not shrink it. Everyone has those annoying pockets of excess fat on their bodies that no amount of healthy diet and exercise can eliminate. Liposculpting is designed to remove those pockets to give your body a better shape and make it more aesthetically pleasing. There is no quick fix for weight loss, and this procedure is no exception.
The ideal candidate for liposculpting is someone within 20 percent of their ideal body weight. For example, if you are 5’6”, you have to weigh less than 190 pounds to be a good candidate for the procedure. Your doctor will be able to determine if you are a candidate for liposculpting during your consultation.
Myth #2: Liposculpting Erases Cellulite
Despite being portrayed otherwise, cellulite and deep excess fat are unrelated. People who have cellulite are not necessarily overweight, nor do they necessarily have excess fat pockets under their cellulite. That’s because cellulite is caused by inflammatory changes in the fat that sits in the connective tissue just below the surface of the skin. That fat pushes against the connective tissue, which is what causes the skin to look puckered and bumpy.
Since liposculpting targets deep tissue fat, it doesn’t actually touch the connective tissue fat. Liposuction done under the cellulite may allow reduction of volume of the entire area, but will not improve the appearance of the texture.
Liposuction done superficially within the cellulitic layer will only make it look worse.
Myth #3: Liposculpting Results Are Permanent
When your doctor performs the procedure, they don’t use a magical device that prevents excess weight gain forever. Like most cosmetic procedures, liposculpting results can be undone by the patient if they don’t take care of themselves. Poor habits can cause those pockets of fat to return, so it’s important that you have a clear plan to maintain your health to prevent this from occurring. The fat that was removed during your liposuction procedure is, in fact, gone forever, but excess calorie intake will stil be stored within the smaller fat layer left behind or in the surrounding areas.
Again, liposuction works great in patients at a good body weight index, and who have good healthy habits.
Myth #4: Liposculpting Isn’t for Men
Even though women are by far the greatest purveyors of the plastic surgery culture, the number of men undergoing cosmetic procedures is steadily rising. While men make up only about 11% of cosmetic surgey patients in the United States, in Europe that percentage is three to four times as high.
Men have body image concerns just like women, and liposculpting is a common procedure for them. Also, since this surgery can be performed on any part of the body, men may have different target areas than women when it comes to removing excess fat deposits. Downtime required to recover is relatively short with this procedure.
Myth #5: Liposculpting Is Dangerous
As with any surgical procedure, there are risks and possible complications associated with liposculpting. That’s why it’s very important that you consult with a skilled and highly-trained doctor when considering this surgery. Liposculpting can’t be performed by just any surgeon; it needs to be someone who is specially trained and board-certified. Liposuction should be performed in the appropriately safe setting with accredited surgical support help, and anestheisa provision.
That being said, liposculpting was one of top two requested cosmetic surgeries performed last year. It can be done in conjunction with other procedures, such as a mommy makeover, or male chest reduction. The technology surrounding liposculpting has also advanced significantly, reducing the recovery time and making the procedure minimally invasive.
How We Do Liposculpting
At Basile Plastic Surgery, a technique called tumescent liposuction is used for patients. This technique is considered the industry’s “gold standard.” The doctor starts with a subcutaneous injection at the target area. This injected fluid helps break up the fat deposits and also numbs the area. Next, a very small and hollow tube, known as a cannula, is inserted through a tiny incision. This tube is moved back and forth under the skin to break up the fat pockets even more. A vacuum device is then used to suck out the excess tissue. After all the target tissue has been removed, incisions are closed with sutures that dissolve on their own. The number and placement of the incisions will vary from patient to patient, but they will be small and easily concealed.
Patients can expect some bruising and swelling for the first several days after surgery. You’ll have to wear a compression garment of some sort to protect your body and manage the swelling. Your doctor will likely prescribe medication to manage any pain during the recovery process. Patients generally return to work and normal activity after a few days.
Schedule a Liposculpting Consultation
If you have stubborn fat deposits and are looking into having a liposcuplting procedure performed, contact Basile Plastic Surgery and set up a consultation appointment. Our Naples, FL, office has highly specialized staff members that are ready and waiting to answer all your questions about the types of services and procedures we offer.
Dr. Andrea Basile is a board-certified plastic surgeon with the American Society of Plastic Surgeons who has over 20 years of experience in cosmetic surgery. During your consultation, he’ll go over your medical history, discuss your goals and needs, and give you a comprehensive assessment on the procedure or procedures necessary to achieve those results. He will be able to answer any questions you might have about the surgery, the recovery process, and what to expect as a patient.