Liposuction Tips

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Is liposuction appropriate for breast reduction?

Breast Sculpting and Liposuction

If you're in the unlikely position of having men say your breasts are too large (and it does happen, especially if you're a man yourself), you might think traditional breast reduction surgery is too frightening and invasive. Breast liposuction can be a scarless alternative to breast reduction surgery and is thought to tighten the skin after the fat is removed through tumescent liposuction. Traditional breast reduction may result in loose skin and an anchor-shaped scar from scalpels. Some tips to consider before you reduce the size of your top with liposuction:

  • Some surgeons don't recommend ultrasonic liposuction for breasts since it removes massive amounts of fat, and results can be difficult to measure in such a relatively small area.
  • Seek out a body sculpting surgeon who routinely performs breast liposuction, or better yet, a breast enchancement surgeon.
  • Be aware that there is as much risk of burning and swelling as with other liposuction procedures.
  • You may experience discoloration, but your surgeon will provide topical creams that can help.
  • If you're concerned about breast cancer, the risks are the same before and after breast liposuction.

Have a pre- and post-operation mammogram. We've all been told that "bigger is better," but not if it impedes your quality of life. Also, when it comes to breast surgery, safer is better.

How much does liposuction cost?

Liposuction Cost

While your plastic surgeon sucks out the fat from your love handles and waist, you may notice your wallet slims down too. Liposuction isn't cheap. The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery says that in 2003, the average liposuction cost was $2,578. However, your ultrasonic liposuction surgeon may quote you a fee of $3,000, not including the little extras:

  • Anesthesia
  • Hospital room stay
  • Operating room facility
  • Surgeon's fees
  • Garments
  • Medications

You could easily get a quote of $800-$1,000 if you want a minuscule amount of fat sucked from your chin or upper arms. The liposuction cost will vary from surgeon to surgeon, and sometimes your plastic surgeon will base the liposuction cost on how much fat you had removed.

Some tips before you take out a lip loan:

  • Are the fees being quoted too low? The surgeon may be underestimating the costs, or neglecting to tell you about the additional charges. Ask what the basic fee is and whether it includes associated expenses.
  • Get price quotes and before-and-after pictures from at least three surgeons.
  • Ask how the surgeon arrives at fees, and request a fee schedule.
  • Ask about those associated expenses.
  • Inquire about how you'll be billed, whether the surgeon requires a deposit before beginning work, whether the deposit is refundable, and so forth.

Because liposuction depends on the amount of fat drawn out and the number of body parts you elect to have done, fees vary more than any other plastic surgery procedure. We've heard fees quoted for just one area at $3,200, for three areas, $5,800, and five areas $7,700. One area could be both ineer thighs, the abdomen or both upper arms. The change to your appearance will probably be drastic. Make sure the change to your bank account isn't a shock.

Should I have liposuction done on my thighs?

Thigh Liposuction

If you feel self-conscious when you walk, you're not alone. Pundits have quipped that men can suck in their guts but women can't such in their thighs. Neither, for that matter, can men, and liposuction is now one of the top five cosmetic surgery procedures for men. We all want thinner thighs--although women tend to undergo thigh body sculpting more.

Be warned if you're overweight and feeling cottage cheese between your thighs: Some RNs and surgeons recommend against thigh liposuction for certain needs, such as weight loss and cellulite. Liposuction removes deep fat, not surface fat, which cellulite is. You could actually end up with gooshier thighs than before since there's no underlying deeper fat. Mesotherapy is an excellent treatment for cellulite.

Reputable, responsible surgeons will only take you on for tumescent liposuction and ultrasonic liposuction if you're physically fit. Besides, you can't predict where you'll gain weight following body sculpting. Since the typical liposuction cost is $2000-$8000, you want to make sure the procedure will work. Although physical fitness is an important consideration, people typically have problems shedding fatty deposits in the thigh area. Thigh liposuction can trim away that "goosh." A tube inserted in your buttock crease will drain the fat from the areas your surgeon earmarks (you need to talk about these in advance), and a drainage tube will siphon away any excess fluid.

How do you keep that newly svelte lower half? Your surgeon will give you a clinging garment to wear for up to six weeks post-liposuction. The tight compression garment holds your new body shape in place and allows it to "set" while reducing pain and swelling. Don't feel the temptation to jog post-thigh liposuction! While you want to show off your improved appearance and keep fit, your doctor will prescribe light activity. Besides, you've been hiding your thighs for years. Your husband or wife can wait a few weeks for the total transformation--but you are having this body sculpting done for you, right?

What are some complications from liposuction?

Liposuction Complications

While you're thinking about your new body, consider the complications that may result from liposuction. You've already advised your doctor that smaller rods are better. Here are some other common commplications and ways you can elminate them.

  • In the tumescent liposuction and super-wet liposuction procedures, which use the same injected solution, too-high lidocaine levels may be toxic. Ask about the specific lidocaine content.
  • Blood clots may occur, especially in the legs. Ask your surgeon to use compression devices to squeeze your thighs during liposuction surgery and keep the blood flowing.
  • Fat embolisms usually happen when a surgeon uses too-large rods. But you've already taken care of that.
  • Bruising and swelling go with surgery.

But to avoid excess bruising and swelling, your doctor can increase the amount of epinephrine or adrenaline in the tumescent fluid. The usual concentration is 1 to 1 million parts of adrenaline. The increased adrenaline also reduces pain. If your doctor doesn't perform any of these steps during body sculpting and liposuction, ask why. The financial and physical cost of liposuction shouldn't outweigh the benefits of a brand new you.

What is mesotherapy and is it an alternative to liposuction?

Liposuction and Mesotherapy

Mesotherapy? Is that for dinosaurs upset over the comet or whatever killed them? Hardly. Mesotherapy, invented in Europe and South America, is a body sculpting technique touted as an alternative to tumescent liposuction and ultrasonic liposuction. Mesotherapy involves several micro-injections of pharmaceutical and homeopathic medications, natural plant extracts and vitamins that can banish cellulite on your thighs. Plastic surgeons don't recommend liposuction for cellulite, or for weight loss, whereas Dr. Stephen Jennings has developed a procedure called LipoSculpt that purports to produce weight loss. LipoSculpt and mesotherapy supposedly don't require the four weeks of down time and reduced activity. As you would with liposuction, you need to remember key points about mesotherapy:

  • You still need to be fit and healthy, and body sculpting or surgery is no substitute for diet and exercise.
  • If you need to remove large amounts of fat, ultrasonic liposuction is still the preferred treatment.
  • Many physicians will offer both liposuction and mesotherapy. Ask your doctor which one is right for you.
  • Some mesotherapy treatments have "Lipo-" in the name. Be clear about whether you choose mesotherapy or liposuction.
  • Mesotherapy cost is lower than liposuction cost, setting you back $350-$500 since mesotherapy targets specific smaller areas.
  • Some plastic surgeons caution that mesotherapy operates on mild areas of localized fat, not larger areas.
  • Mesotherapy doesn't require sedation, although you may require steroid drugs to reduce burning and inflammation.

So if you want cellulite removal and a faster recovery time, you have better chances with mesotherapy. As for the dinosaurs, they probably need liposuction.

What is ultrasonic liposuction and why should I have it?

Ultrasonic Liposuction

If you think UAL is a bankrupt airline, think again! UAL stands for ultrasound assisted liposuction (or ultrasonic liposuction), an alternative to tumescent liposuction. Instead of the traditional tumescent liposuction that injects saline to make it easier to suction out fat, ultrasonic liposuction uses ultrasonic energy to liquefy the fat. An ultrasonic rod inserted into your fat radiates ultrasonic waves, then the fat gets suctioned out as in tumescent liposuction.

Fans of UAL say that there is less blood and pain with ultrasonic liposuction, while opponents claim side effects include significant tingling and burning. Fluid collection is common, and your surgeon will typically drain the fluid that can gather under the skin. Tumescent fluid tends to reduce bruising, which is one advantage of tumescent liposuction. However, ultrasonic liposuction can reduce skin, especially in the neck, and remove larger amounts of fat, since the liquefied lipids can more easily be sucked out.

Traditional liposuction targets areas with smaller fat deposits. Ask your surgeon which procedure she has had success in, which she has performed more often, and which she would recommend for herself. If you still think UAL is an airline, study cosmetic surgery and body sculpting before you incur any liposuction cost.

What is tumescent liposuction and why should I have it?

Tumescent Liposuction

Tumescent liposuction. UAL lipo. Super-wet lipo. The lingo makes you just want to stick with those gooshy upper arms. Relax--with tumescent liposuction the doctor injects tumescent fluid filled with saline, adrenaline and lidocaine into the fat. This reduces pain, and the fat can be drawn more easily out of your body. In addition to the pain-reducing fluid, you'll receive general anesthesia (completely under) or sedation (aware of what's going on but not in pain).

Tumescent Tip: Your surgeon should use small rods, 3-4 mm in diameter, to draw out the fat. Larger rods can cause irregularities, dimples, puckers, and divots By the way, if you hear people throwing around terms such as lipoplasty, liposculpture, liposculption, and suction-assisted lipoplasty, they mean liposuction or tumescent liposuction. So don't settle for that deep fat around your upper arms just because the terminology's confusing. Ask your doctor to explain all the procedures and options.

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