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Liposuction FAQs

Following are the common questions about Liposuction:

  1. What is liposuction?
  2. Who is a good candidate for liposuction?
  3. What body parts can be treated with liposuction?
  4. Is liposuction safe?
  5. How much fat can be removed safely using liposuction?
  6. What is the difference between liposuction and tummy tuck?
  7. What are the different techniques of liposuction?
  8. How much does liposuction cost?
  9. Is liposuction covered under health insurance?
  10. How is liposuction performed?
  11. What are the possible side effects of liposuction surgery?
  12. How long does the recovery take?
  13. How long will it take to get the final results from liposuction?
  14. Do liposuction results last for years?
  15. How many times you can get liposuction?

Q. What is liposuction?

A. Liposuction is a fat removal surgery that helps both men and women to get desired body shape and contours. It targets the body parts that have excess fat deposits and break them down to provide an enhanced shape. Liposuction is mostly used for diet and exercise-resistant fat. It is also known as liposculpture or lipoplasty.

Q. Who is a good candidate for liposuction?

A. A person is considered a good candidate for liposuction when he/she meets the basic requirements that are-

  • Being within 30% of your ideal body weight.
  • Having a firm and toned muscles with good skin elasticity.
  • Not having habits of regularly smoking or using drugs.
  • Being overall healthy, i.e., no medical condition that can impair the healing abilities.
  • Maintaining a healthy lifestyle to retain the results longer.

The doctor will make sure that you meet the eligibility criteria during the initial consultations.

Q. What body parts can be treated with liposuction?

A. Liposuction surgery can be performed on various body parts where fat usually deposits. The common problem areas are-

  • Chin and neck (to get rid of the double chin)
  • Abdomen and flanks (to create sculpted abs and remove love handles and muffin tops)
  • Breasts (to remove side boob fat)
  • Hips (to eliminate squareness)
  • Outer, anterior, and inner thighs (to get rid of disproportionate thighs and calves fat)
  • Knees (to create runner’s knees)
  • Arms (to sculpt and define the upper arms and make the toned)
  • Back (to remove dreaded back fat and create a more feminine physique)
  • Male breasts/gynecomastia can also be treated through liposuction

Q. Is liposuction safe?

A. Yes. Liposuction is a USFDA-approved body contouring procedure that is safe and effective for fat removal. Moreover, it is performed by a highly experienced plastic or cosmetic surgeons that are certified by the board and have ample knowledge to mitigate the potential risks.

The latest liposuction techniques further make it possible for a person to undergo liposuction in a minimally invasive manner.

Q. How much fat can be removed safely using liposuction?

A. Through liposuction, it is safer to remove around 5-11 pounds (3-5 liters) of fat at once. There is no law that states this rule. However, most plastic surgeons follow this rule as a standard to determine how much fat will be removed.

The main reason behind this is because IV fluid is given to the patient as a replacement for the blood and bodily fluid lost during the procedure. If excess IV fluid is given, it can be dangerous for the individual's health. To make sure that liposuction doesn't lead to serious health problems, the surgeons avoid removing larger amounts of fat at once.

Q. What is the difference between liposuction and tummy tuck?

A. Liposuction is a procedure that removes stubborn fat from unwanted areas. The main focus of the surgery is to improve the body shape and remove fat deposits in a minimally invasive manner. It can be performed on various body parts, including the abdomen.

A tummy tuck, also known as abdominoplasty, is a more intensive procedure that not only removes the excess fat from the tummy but also reconstructs the muscles of the abdomen to remove the saggy and loose skin in the abdomen. It is also more invasive than liposuction but provides great results as the patient desires.

Q. What are the different techniques of liposuction?

A. The common types of liposuction that are still used for fat removal are-

  • Tumescent liposuction
  • Power-assisted liposuction
  • Laser-assisted liposuction
  • Ultrasound-assisted liposuction

All these techniques use different technology to remove fat from different body parts and provide effective results. In many cases, plastic surgeons combine these techniques to deliver the best possible results from liposuction surgery.

Q. How much does liposuction cost?

A. Liposuction surgery cost usually varies from Rs. 35,000 to Rs. 5,00,00 approximately. This is an estimate of how much the entire treatment may cost you. However, the exact cost may vary significantly depending on the following factors-

  • The number of areas that are to be targeted
  • Average volume of the fat that needs removal
  • Technique used for the treatment
  • Surgeon's consultation and operating fee
  • Choice of the hospital (super specialty or multi-specialty)
  • Hospital admission and discharge fee
  • Hospital bed charges (depends on the number of days and availability of the ward)
  • Anesthesia fee
  • Diagnostic tests before and after the surgery
  • Post-surgery medications and support devices
  • Follow-ups consultations

All these factors are considered while calculating the final cost of liposuction surgery.

Q. Is liposuction covered under health insurance?

A. No, liposuction is a cosmetic procedure, which is why it is generally not covered under insurance. The patient has to bear all the expenses personally. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. If liposuction has some therapeutic benefits on your body, some parts of the treatment may be covered under insurance. For more information, it is better to discuss the terms and conditions of the insurance policy with the providers.

Q. How is liposuction performed?

A. The basic principle behind liposuction is quite simple. The procedure is carried out in the following steps-

  • Anesthesia (local or general) is given to the patient to numb the body parts that will be treated during the procedure.
  • A small incision is made in the skin to insert the liposuction cannula.
  • The cannula is used to break the fat deposits and a vacuum is used to extract the fat cells.
  • IV fluids are given to the patient to replace the lost blood and fluids.

If needed, incisions are closed with stitches.

Q. What are the possible side effects of liposuction surgery?

A. As liposuction surgery is a major procedure, it also carries several risks. During or after the surgery, the following side effects can occur-

  • Contour irregularities due to poor skin elasticity or impaired healing.
  • Fluid accumulation or seromas may also form under the skin that needs to be drained properly.
  • Numbness in the treated area may last longer if a nerve is damaged.
  • Infections are rare but still possible.
  • Internal puncture may happen if the liposuction cannula penetrates too deeply in the internal organ.
  • Fat embolism may also occur if broken fat tissues become trapped in the blood vessels in any organ.
  • Reaction to anesthesia or lidocaine which is given to manage the pain in the patients.
  • Excessive bleeding may also in some people whose blood is thin or if an organ or blood vessel is damaged during the procedure.

Q. How long does the recovery take?

A. The average recovery from liposuction takes around 4-5 weeks. During the recovery period, the patient has to wear compression garments to control the swelling and keep the muscles in place. The bruising and swelling will take around 7-10 days to go away and you will be able to resume daily activities with minimal pain and discomfort.

Q. How long will it take to get the final results from liposuction?

A. The final results of liposuction may take around 2-3 months to appear. The surgeon generally helps the patient to visualize realistic results. Immediately after the surgery, there will be some swelling and bruising that may take a while to go away. Therefore, the full extent of the results takes weeks and typically months to appear. During this period, you will have to several precautions, eat a healthy and balanced diet, and also exercise regularly to enhance the body contours and get a toned figure.

Q. Do liposuction results last for years?

A. Yes. In many cases, liposuction results may last for 5-10 years as long as the patient follows the doctor’s advice. You should know that even though the fat tissues are removed from the body, it doesn't guarantee that further deposition won't occur. The results are long-lasting for the individual who lives a healthy life with proper diet and exercise. This will help to keep the bodyweight steady and also prevent fat from coming back. External factors like pregnancy may also cause fat deposition after liposuction surgery.

Q. How many times you can get liposuction?

A. It is possible to undergo liposuction more than once but usually, it is the first time during which you will get the most noticeable results. After that, you may undergo revision surgery for further enhancements but the effectiveness of the procedure may vary.

Normally, once you've had liposuction, the doctor will advise you to wait for at least six months before undergoing liposuction in the same place. If you want to remove fat from the different body parts, it can be done after 3 months with the doctor's approval.