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Lipo: The most demanded cosmetic procedure in India 2019-2020

liposuction surgery
By Admin : 24 December 2019

Liposuction or lipoplasty is a surgical procedure for excess fat removal from various parts of the body. It aims to remove fat deposits from the body which you are unable to get rid of through diet and physical workout. Researches claim that liposuction procedure is drastically on the rise over the past five years. According to recent statistics, around 18 million people opted for this minimally invasive surgical procedure Around 258,558 liposuction cases were handled in 2018. American Society of Plastic Surgeons(ASPS) reported liposuction among the top 5 cosmetic surgical procedures.

All you need to know about Liposuction

What is liposuction?

Liposuction or lipo procedure aims to change and enhance the contour of the body. The fat cells removed permanently and the overall body fat remains the same as it was before treatment. When an individual gains weight, each fat cell increases in size and volume. Liposuction reduces the number of fat cells in isolated areas. The dermatologic surgeon performs this procedure usually on hips, buttocks, back, belly, thighs, arms or face. This cosmetic procedure is mainly done to reshape the body for a better appearance.

How is the surgery done?

Before the surgery, you may need to get some lab tests done. Your doctor may ask you to get your medical history and perform some physical examinations to check if your body is fit for the surgery. A form needs to be signed to get your consent in writing for possible risks and benefits associated with the procedure. There are some do’s and don’t you need to follow to get ready for the surgery:

  • Avoid smoking to promote better healing.
  • Do not take aspirin or anti-inflammatory drugs as they can cause bleeding.
  • Keep yourself hydrated for safe recovery.
  • Women may be asked to stop taking the contraceptive pill.
  • Anemic patients need to take iron supplements.

In the case of epidural treatment for the lower body, anesthesia is injected around the spine causing partial numbness in the abdomen and legs. Local anesthesia for treatment of small areas.

After evaluating certain factors, your doctor will adopt either of the following techniques for liposuction:

  • Tumescent liposuction: This is the most popular technique in which several liters of saline water with local anesthesia and vessel-constrictor are pumped below the skin area that needs to be suctioned. The deposited fat is taken out with the help of small tubes.
  • Dry liposuction: In this technique, no fluid is injected before the fat is removed. This method is rarely used as it involves a high risk of bleeding.
  • Ultrasound-assisted liposuction(UAL): Ultrasonic liposuction is a fat loss procedure that liquefies fat cells before removal. This is performed by targeting ultrasonic waves on fat cells. The cannula is energized with ultrasound. The ultrasound vibrations burst the walls of fat cells which emulsifies the fat. The liquid fat is easier to suction out. It is best suited for fibrous areas. After UAL, suction-assisted lipo is carried out to remove liquefied fat.
  • Power-assisted liposuction(PAS): Powered liposuction is performed using a specialized cannula which is moved back and forth allowing the surgeon to pull out fat more easily. The cannula uses small, rapid vibrations to breakdown fat cells so that they can be suctioned out. It is a safe method with faster recovery.
  • Laser-Assisted Lipolysis(LAL): This is laser-guided lipo in which a small tube is inserted through a small incision to deliver laser energy and heat into the fat under the skin. Laser-assisted lipo makes use of power and technology associated with medical laser beams to liquefy fat to be taken out of the body.

After the liposuction surgery, the doctor will prescribe antibiotics and painkillers to relieve pain and inflammation. Significant bruising in the targeted area is fitted with support corsets or bandages.

liposuction surgery

What are the risks involved?

As in every surgery, the major concern is the loss of blood as well as the risk of infection. The risks involved in the procedure are usually linked with the complexity of the surgery. Here are some possible risks and complications involved in the surgery:

  • Ecchymosis: Ecchymosis is severe blood loss or bleeding under the skin which can last for several weeks.
  • Inflammation: Swelling may remain until six months or more after the surgery and fluid may continue to ooze from the incisions.
  • Thrombophlebitis: As an adverse effect of surgery, blood clots may accumulate in veins causing inflammation and further complications.
  • Contour irregularities: If the skin is less elastic, the wound heals unusually. Also, in case the fat removal is uneven, the appearance of the skin may be withered, wavy or bumpy.
  • Infections: There may occur infection as a side effect of surgery. It might go away with proper medication or in case of severity, it needs to be treated surgically.
  • Pulmonary embolism: While the surgery is carried out, the accumulated fat may enter the blood vessels and moves to the lungs. This can be dangerous as it can hinder the circulation in the lungs.
  • Allergic reaction: Patients may be allergic to medications or materials used during surgery.
  • Skin burns: The movement of cannula in the procedure may cause friction burns to the nerves or skin.
  • Numbness: The affected area may go numb for some time.
  • Kidney or heart problems: During the surgery, the fluids are either injected or suctioned. The change in fluid levels of the body may cause kidney or heart-related problems.

Can liposuction be used to treat obesity?

You might have come across some of the pre and post-procedure advertisements that show an obese person turned into a beach body. But, this is not reality. Liposuction only removes subcutaneous fat and not visceral fat. Subcutaneous fat is the fat deposited below the epidermis layer of the skin. On the other hand, visceral fat is present inside the abdominal cavity and causes serious health conditions such as heart problems, blood pressure, obesity, etc.

Is liposuction a sustainable way to reduce weight?

Though, liposuction is not a comprehensive weight-loss method but, can permanently remove fat cells, therefore, giving a proper shape to the body. The amount of fat that can be removed without any risk is limited. People who opt for liposuction usually have a stable weight and wish to eliminate extra fat from certain parts of the body. The surgery may also prevent further weight gain. The results of the surgery are usually long-lasting with improved appearance.

Who is the ideal candidate for liposuction?

It is a fact that all cosmetic surgeries involve a certain amount of risk. So, it is recommended that one should try to reduce weight with a controlled diet and exercise to remain healthy. Besides, liposuction is surely not for those individuals who are overweight or obese. However, a good candidate for liposuction is the one who is:

  • A non-smoker person
  • A person who does not consume tobacco-related products
  • A person with fat accumulation that doesn't go away with diet or exercise
  • A person with good skin elasticity and muscle tone
  • An individual with a positive attitude and specific goals for body enhancement
  • A healthy individual with no prolonged or life-threatening illness or medical condition that can impair healing
  • An adult with 30% ideal weight having a firm and elastic skin
liposuction surgery

What are the ill-effects of Liposuction?

There are certain risks involved in the liposuction procedure both during and after the surgery. The risks involved during the procedure include:

  • injuries or puncture wounds to other parts of the body
  • anesthesia risks
  • burns from equipment, such as ultrasound probes
  • damage of nerves
  • shock
  • death

In some cases, a liposuction patient may face certain problems immediately after the surgery such as:

  • Blood clotting in lungs
  • Excess fluid accumulation in the lungs
  • Fat clots
  • Infections
  • Hematoma or bleeding under the skin
  • Seroma or fluid leaking under the skin
  • Edema or swelling
  • Skin necrosis i.e the death of skin cells
  • Reactions to anesthesia and other medications
  • Heart and kidney problems
  • Death

The risks during the recovery period after the surgery include:

  • Improper shape or contours of the body
  • wavy, dimpled or bumpy skin
  • numbness
  • bruising
  • pain
  • swelling and soreness
  • infections
  • fluid imbalances
  • changes in skin sensation and feeling
  • changes in the color of the skin
  • healing problems

What is the downtime of the Liposuction procedure?

After liposuction surgery, swelling in and around the treated area usually subsides within a few weeks and the site appears less bulky. Depending on the type of surgery, the period of your stay in the hospital is decided. However, bruising, swelling, and soreness of the treatment site may last for at least a few weeks.

Your surgeon may ask you to wear a compression garment for one or two months after surgery to control swelling. You'll probably also have to take some antibiotics to prevent infection. Most people can return to work within a few days and get back to normal activities within two to three weeks in general.

The results of the surgery are generally long-lasting provided the person maintains his or her weight. Those who gain weight after the procedure may find variation in fat distribution. It usually takes about two to three weeks to make a full recovery but the overall noticeable results might take up to six months.

What is the outcome of Liposuction Surgery

The results of the liposuction procedure may not be observed immediately. It usually takes one to three months for the results to be noticeable. The procedure is quite effective and successfully removes the fat from areas like thighs, belly, arms, chin, etc. However, this procedure cannot improve the appearance of loose skin.

Does liposuction leave scars?

Liposuction surgery does lead to scarring. This is because small incisions have to be made to extract fat from the target body area. However, the scars are very small, certainly, a few millimeters in size. Also, the scars are created at discrete locations. These scars tend to fade away with time and gradually disappear. One can take certain medications to remove the visibility of scars. Also, irritation may occur around the incision site. There may occur baggy or rippling skin as temporary side effects of the surgery. So, it is advisable to avoid rubbing the incision area.

Another unfavorable outcome of liposuction is bruising and ecchymosis. This happens immediately after the procedure and may increase to seven to ten days. Bruising generally goes away by two to four weeks post-surgery. In rare cases, bleeding may occur from superficial veins damaged due to the surgery.

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