Important Things to Consider About Liposuction to Achieve Weight Loss Goal
Got it? Now, what would you do to modify it? Depending on the body part, there is a strong chance you’ve thought about liposuction.
Nowadays, liposuction is the most common aesthetical procedure performed by those who wish to get rid of their extra pounds, as this technique relies on the removal of overload quantities of fatty tissue from your body. But what happens exactly?
Undergoing this procedure is quite simple, when properly guided by your doctor. The intervention lasts from 1 to 4 hours, and can be performed on the arms, abdomen, back, buttocks, hips, thighs and flanks. It is usually done under anesthesia, either local or general, so you won’t feel uncomfortable during the insertion of the cannulas.
Cannulas are a special type of tubes, connected to a liposuction machine that will suck the adipose tissue out, just like a vacuum. These are inserted through small incisions on the skin, made by the surgeon, so they are able to sweep the subcutaneous area and dislodge the adipose tissue beneath.
Once all the fatty tissues are gone, smaller tubes are inserted to remove any leakage from the adjacent blood vessels, as well as giving a better contour to the deflated area. This part of the procedure usually extends through the recovery period, for better results.
For most people, the reason they resorted to liposuction as an option is mainly due to esthetic reasons – most of the patients that choose this method have a healthy weight but wish to eliminate undesired fat deposits.
But there are some conditions that can be treated with this procedure.
Conditions that can be treated through liposuction
Lipodistrophy syndrome is a great example of conditions that require this kind of intervention, as it causes an unbalanced distribution of fat in the body, thus distorting its appearance.
Lymphedema, a chronic condition where excess fluid accumulates in both arms and legs can be alleviated by liposuction. In extreme cases, doctors recommend morbidly obese patients to undergo this kind of surgery to improve their quality of life and reduce the chance of developing life-threatening diseases associated with excess weight.
Will it Work?
According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, over 1,200,000 people submitted to a liposuction. Among those people are Jessica Alba, Beyonce, Donatella Versace, Kim Kardashian, Kyle Richards, Courtney Love and Britney Spears (to name a few). The number of celebrities going under the knife is just a proof that liposuction is getting more and more appealing.
But not every case is successful. Remember, our body reacts differently to surgery. Some people complained with their results.
Kyle Richards, mother of four, tried to regain a youthful body after many pregnancies. She managed to do so by resorting to liposuction. But Courtney Love’s result did not go well. Just look at the sagging skin on her stomach.
This happens because there are still some challenges during the surgery that can further complicate recovery: extracting the right amount of fat, leaving the surrounding tissue unscathed, and above all, avoiding any discomfort for the patient during and after the procedure.
Who can undergo liposuction?
If a surgeon fails on these aspects, the patient will require more reconstructive procedures to fix the mistake. Nevertheless, an assessment of the candidates is done before even scheduling the intervention. Generally, patients who are above 18 of age, in a good health condition, and with enough fat reservoirs to avoid disrupting the body’s balance are considered to be ideal candidates of liposuction.
Keep in mind that limiting diseases like cardiovascular problems, diabetes, infections and other chronic illnesses are negative factors for eligibility, as they can complicate the surgery. Older people might have problems as well, since their skin’s healing and reconstructing capacity is not at its prime, which can eventually lead to a longer recovery time.
Deciding whether to go for a liposuction or not is really up to you. There are benefits and downsides in every situation, and you should need to weigh each of them before going forward.
Nowadays there is a wide array of techniques to perform a liposuction, they have been refined, becoming safer, easier, and more effective, causing less discomfort. In case of doubt, get informed with your doctor about the possible outcomes of this process.
In Portugal, 1 in 5 women have already used a liposuction method, despite the high price. In the US, the cost of a liposuction ranges from $1,500 to $7,500, depending of the area that is going to be treated (abdomen, breasts and buttocks are the more expensive areas) and the gender of the patient (women pay more than men).
In the Philippines, a liposuction procedure is less expensive than in USA (between $800 and $4000) and the price varies depending on the area to be treated.
Pros of Doing a Liposuction
The best part of liposuction is that it can help you get the body you always wanted. When you undergo liposuction, you will be on your way to a significant weight loss.
Liposuction can remove fat cells forever. That way your body will never have the extra fat cells and that is why it is easier to improve it.
Liposuction is generally safe to some users.
After liposuction, most patients start to move again. However, one or two additional days of bed rest may be necessary to gain back all the strength required to move normally. This is especially true if a large amount of fat has been removed.
The results will take not much time to see. Patients have reported to witness significant results between two or three weeks.Within 2 years after liposuction, most people lose two thirds of their extra weight.
Most of the diseases associated with obesity, including hypertension, diabetes, sleep apnea, joint pain or incontinence often improve after the removal of fat cells using liposuction surgery.With the use of liposuction, you can also reduce drastically the risk of cardiovascular problems such as heart attack or stroke.
Studies have shown that people who lost weight using liposuction surgery went well in their careers and made more money and achieved a high professional status.
Certain parts of the body do not respond to diet or exercise and so, liposuction is a viable option that can give you quick and favorable results.
Cons of Doing a Liposuction
Since liposuction involves surgery, like any surgical procedure, there are certain elements of risks involved.
Problems with the removal of too much fat in a single procedure can arise. It is usually safe to remove six to eight pounds or three liters of fat cells in a procedure. The risk is higher if more is removed.
This type of procedure could leave some type of scar. After surgery, you may return to work after a few days, but you may still have some scars and bruises on the skin months after surgery.
Healing is a gradual process and there are no exceptions to this procedure. Your surgeon may recommend that you use a postoperative brace. It serves to reduce the swelling that occurred because of the removal of fat. You may need to use this strap up to six weeks.
There might be some nutritional deficiencies, which may lead to anemia.
Another common complication associated with liposuction is an abdominal hernia. Rapid weight loss after this procedure will most certainly endanger gallstones.
You may develop an allergy to the anesthesia or the materials used during surgery.
Tissue damage is possible due to wrong manipulation of cannulas, as well as a chance of infection. Punctures on the skin allow bacteria to enter the body and multiply on the lower layers of the skin. Cannula induced damage is often visible to the naked eye. Internal organs can be affected as well: cannulas can perforate them. A cannula does not contain a camera to guide the surgeon to lipidic areas, so an inexperienced surgeon means trouble for you. Fluid imbalance occurs when fluid removal is excessive, and can ultimately lead to heart, liver and kidney problems.
In my opinion, evaluating the pros and cons of liposuction, the surgical procedure should only be used as a last resort, after diet and exercise proved to have no effect in reducing weight.
The cons are serious, and people should need to look at them, as many don’t even know that there are adverse effects associated with the procedure. To me, the liposuction can also serve a purpose, despite all the cons: improve self-esteem of the patient, who note the results so quickly and so happens to have greater motivation to maintain healthy habits and have more regular physical exercise.
Other procedures can replace liposuction and get the same results. A new way to reduce fat is radiofrequency, which releases energy in fatty areas, destroying fat cells.
Despite having not yet been approved by FDA, it is already being used by many dermatologists. And as there is no need of rest, patients can return to regular activities immediately. It can be used in any area of the body with the same degree of success. For people who are not overweight but have pockets of fat that are not responding to diet or exercise, radiofrequency is a good option.
Applying cold energy in fat is also a new procedure, noninvasive, already approved by the FDA, and is being used in areas located in the lower abdomen or on sides of the body. As fat cells are more sensitive to temperature than those of the skin, this procedure slowly freezes the fat cells without causing trauma or damage to surrounding tissue. Therefore, the results are not immediate, taking place over two to six months. Despite being innovative, it is limited, as it allows the application only on larger areas of the body.
Many surgeons and physicians are opting to offer laser treatments as a noninvasive solution to lose weight. In these procedures, a laser beam is used to direct to adipose tissue and breaks down fat cells. It has become a popular alternative to liposuction because it does not require the use of surgery or needles and it is relatively painless and allows a time of very rapid recovery.
As for me, with all the cons and cost of liposuction, I’d rather stick to a healthy diet and regular exercise.