Liposuction, uncommonly known as lipoplasty or body contouring, is a surgical procedure to remove fat from specific body areas using a suction technique. Typically, liposuction removes fat from the abdomen, thighs, hips, arms, chin, and neck. Liposuction is ideally not an overall weight-loss method or an alternative to weight loss. Instead, you can perform it in cases where you have accumulated body fat in certain spots of the body with a stable body weight otherwise. You may sometimes use it as a treatment for gynecomastia and breast reduction.
Fat cells increase in size and volume with weight gain. Liposuction works by reducing these fat cells focused on a specific body area. The importance of fat present and the area’s appearance determines the amount of fat to remove. However, liposuction is ineffective on skin surface irregularities, cellulite dimpling, and stretch marks.
Understanding the downside
Like any other major surgery, liposuction has several risks, including an allergic reaction to anesthesia and bleeding. Other complications or possible side effects after liposuction are:
- Contour irregularities
Damage under the skin from the cannula used in the liposuction process may result in an irreversible spotted appearance of the skin. The skin may seem wavy, bumpy, or wrinkled because of uneven fat removal or poor skin elasticity. This damage might also be permanent.
- Fluid accumulation
Fluid can temporarily collect beneath the skin; surgeons must empty it using a needle.
Liposuction might also result in permanent or temporary numbness of the affected area. Nerve irritation is also temporarily possible.
Infections of the skin are rare but still possible. A severe disease might be life-threatening too.
- Internal puncture
In rare cases, the cannula might penetrate, puncturing any internal organ. In such an emergency, surgical repair becomes a must.
- Fat embolism
Pieces of fat might break loose and get trapped in blood vessels, travel to the brain, or accumulate in the lungs. Such a scenario is a medical emergency.
- Kidney and heart problems
As fluids are being suctioned out from and injected into the body, a fluctuation in fluid levels of the body may lead to lung, kidney, and heart problems that can threaten life.
- Lidocaine toxicity
An anesthetic with fluids for pain management during liposuction becomes vital. Though generally safe, rarely lidocaine poisoning might occur, causing damage to the central nervous system and heart.
However, the risk of these complications rises only if you perform the procedure over a large body area or if you conduct multiple procedures during the same surgery. If only a tiny amount of fat removal is required, you may carry out the process in any setting. The elastic skin molds itself to the new curves of the treated area, making it look smooth. Liposuction results are permanent as long as weight stability is maintained. There are myriad benefits of the procedure, but you must understand how to get the maximum out of the procedure. Do not have unrealistic expectations. You must follow expert guidance to get the best. With the correct measures, you can easily overcome the side effects of liposuction.