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Liposuction (Lipoplasty, Fat Removal Surgery for Body Contouring) – Scottsdale, AZ

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About Liposuction

Probably the most popular cosmetic surgical surgery in the United States today is Liposuction. There are many references to Liposuction instead of dieting. However, while related, exercise, diet, and surgery all have different effects.

To understand Liposuction, all you need to know is that it is the surgical removal of localized fat, performed through tiny incisions, and therefore leaving tiny scars. The removal is permanent; the areas treated will always be smaller than if they had not been treated. If only one side is treated, that side will always be smaller. However, all of the fat is not removed; the surgeon must take great care to leave a smooth, even layer of fat under the skin, in order to get a smooth result.

If you do subsequently gain fat, you will gain fat everywhere, including in the areas treated with Liposuction. However, where the extra fat associated with weight gain used to collect predominantly in certain areas, after Liposuction it will be distributed more evenly.

Ideal Candidates

Liposuction is a good procedure for patients who are at a healthy weight, but have pesky areas of localized fat that have been hard to lose with exercise and diet. Patients contemplating liposuction should have skin that is taut because liposuction does not address loose or sagging skin.

Liposuction is best viewed as an "improvement" procedure, rather than a "dramatic" procedure like breast augmentation or tummy tuck.  Patients who are expecting improvement in the areas treated are generally happy with their results, but those expecting a dramatic result from liposuction are often disappointed.

It is important to understand that liposuction is not an answer for losing weight.  During your initial consultation, Dr. Nachbar will discuss with you the results that can be realistically achieved.

Surgical Technique

Modern Liposuction is almost always performed using a "tumescent" technique. "Tumescent" means "filled with fluid", so tumescent Liposuction involves first putting a large amount of fluid into the tissue. This fluid contains a dilute anesthetic, to nearly eliminate post-operative discomfort, and epinephrine ("Adrenaline") to nearly eliminate bleeding. For Ultrasonic Liposuction, the fluid also cools the tissue, to prevent internal burns.

Before scheduling surgery, I will carefully review the areas to be suctioned, and the amount of improvement that is realistic. On the morning of surgery, the areas to be suctioned are carefully marked. Once my patient is asleep, tiny incisions are made to inject the fluid into the tissue. After the fluid is injected, I use specially-designed cannulae, or suction tubes, to remove the fat, carefully sculpting the remaining fat into a smooth, but thinner, layer. After the surgery is complete, a special surgical compression garment (an advanced girdle) is put on the patient. This garment must be worn 24 hours a day (except for showers) for three weeks, and helps produce a smoother result.

You may have heard about Ultrasonic Liposuction. Ultrasonic Liposuction uses a special cannula that transmits sound energy, which breaks up the fat and then removes the remaining fluid. It is especially useful when the fat is trapped in scar or fibrous tissue, and also for removal of excess breast tissue when skin tightening is not needed. The main disadvantage is that it requires a larger incision, and so a larger scar (about 1/2 inch long) results.

What to Expect

Patients almost always go home the same day. Pain following surgery is very limited, typically requiring only a single pain pill on the evening of surgery. Patients typically return to work within two days.

It is normal to see swelling and bruising for several weeks, and you may have the sutures about a week after surgery.

Bruising, if it occurs, can last up to one or two months, and generally fades in color from black and blue to green, brown, and yellow, until it eventually disappears.  It is not unusual to see the bruising worsen during the one to two weeks after liposuction, as the blood makes its way through the tissue toward the skin, where it may be visible as a bruise.  Also, the bruising may travel, and bruising on the bottom of the feet can be seen even with liposuction of the flank or thigh.

You should wear your compression garment 24 hours per day for at least three weeks, except when you are taking a shower.  You may take a shower even the same day as surgery.  Be careful to take the compression garment off slowly, as patients sometimes become feint due to blood redistribution if they take the garment off too quickly, especially if they then immediately step into a hot shower.

You can return to work within a day or two if you want, but the areas treated will likely be somewhat sore for six weeks or more, and the swelling can take twelve weeks to completely resolve.

The most important factor for patient satisfaction is a realistic expectation. If the patient expects a result that is beyond what current technology allows, disappointment is certain. For example, loose skin and "cellulite" dimpling is not improved by Liposuction; if severe, they can be improved by tissue lifting, such as thigh lifts. Abdominal bulging may be improved by Liposuction, but will still be present after surgery unless Abdominoplasty is done. But for those stubborn areas that nothing else will budge, Liposuction is an excellent solution.

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Feel Fit and Toned

Liposuction by Dr. Nachbar at Scottsdale Plastic Surgery offers individuals the opportunity to have localized unwanted fat diminished almost immediately.

If you have stubborn areas of localized fat, liposuction may be the answer.  We offer various choices for liposuction treatment based on your personal aesthetic desires.

We invite you to contact our practice in Scottsdale, AZ and schedule your private consultation with Dr. James Nachbar.

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*Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person. Images may contain models.