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Liposuction in details

Frankly speaking, liposuction is one of the simplest plastic surgery operations. Despite the fact that some sources state mortality rate of liposuction in the US equal to mortality rate in vehicle traffic accidents, it is still possible to say: liposuction is the simplest.

If you review other cosmetic surgery operations, you will understand my point of view. For example, lets take breast enlargement, one of the most popular and “visible” cosmetic surgeries. You may have different kinds of troubles having breast enlargement: with implants, with scars, with infection, even with common sense. And still, lines into plastic surgery clinics do not become shorter. Another example is rhinoplasty or nose job, operation which is very demanding to qualification of a surgeon, although easy for patient. Instead, liposuction is just few tubes (cannulas) and pump which suck fat from your body. The biggest trouble may happen when you lose too much blood, removing too much fat. In this article I will make detailed explanation of liposuction technology and health implications.

Liposuction can be use for various areas of human body: thighs, hips, the abdomen, the back, neck, buttocks, face. For example, if we consider face, you can make liposuction and skin tightening in the neck, jowl and chin area – which heal in a few days and produce so called "Weekend facelift”. Another example is breast reduction by liposuction, which allows to retain the ability of breast feeding as the milk ducts are not damaged. In addition, the recovery time from liposuction is shorter than that from traditional breast reduction. However, areas where liposuction is usually applied is not the most important distinguishing factor to discuss this kind of cosmetic surgeries.

This factor is technology. You may imaging task of this technology: remove fat as effective as possible. The first liposuction was performed in 1979 by plastic surgeon to his wife. He used scalpel and simply cut off fat from body. Really simple and straight forward approach, requiring lengthy stays in the hospital with long recovery times and even blood transfusions. Patients generally were not able to walk upright for up to six weeks, suffering great pain and scarring. Certainly, you may expect advances in liposuction at least because word suck in liposuction does not equal to “cut”. And we can, at least process So, lets imagine you are going to liposuction.

The classical liposuction involves tumescent infusion followed by fat extraction. Upon arrival into plastic surgery clinics, you may be given something like Valium to relax (if nervous). Afterwards, when you lie down, Demerol or other pain reliever is injected and the fatty areas of the body are filled with a solution of sterile salt water, adrenaline and anesthetic.

When the anesthetic takes effect, tiny incisions are made in the skin with small needles where fat is to be removed. A cannula, or thin tube, is then inserted and pump sucks fat through cannulas into a disposable container.

After the fat is removed, you are wrapped in a dressing that stays on your body for approximately five days. Foam pads are placed on the areas where the cannula entered the skin and you are then placed in a garment which tightens skin and holds the foam pads. You may feel constricting the garment on the day after surgery.

The worst happens at the second day of liposuction, when your feel sore and bound up. However after the second day, the liposuction experience keeps getting better and better. When the pads are removed you will have an opportunity to see a glimpse of new body…and may like what you see. Of course, dropping a size or two can make anyone feel better and more optimistic. However, do not be to positive about liposuction; liposuction is not to decrease weight, it is just to “tune” areas, which are insensitive to dieting or exercises. Plus liposuction doesn’t eliminate fat permanently. If you continue following old eating habits and lifestyle, the fat will return soon. Although it may return into slightly different places, because old places may have micro traumas, therefore do not store fat.

The rest of liposuction post-operational period is just gradual recovery. Drainage from the treated sites normally stops in seven days after operation, possible slight bruising will heal in about two weeks, and puffiness and swelling will disappear in few months.

Another more aggressive liposuction technology employs ultrasonic which emulsifies fat before extraction. Ultrasonic liposuction causes skin tightening, which does not occur with conventional liposuction. It’s proved to be more effective, especially for areas, where conventional liposuction did not performed well.

Laser liposuction causes the blood vessels to coagulate immediately, so people are left with less bruising, less swelling, and less pain. This process of to breaking up fat cells, is known as lipolysis, resulting in less trauma also tightening the skin.

Advance of laser liposuction is SmartLipo Laser Body Sculpting system, which however, can be applied only to small areas, and called “lunchtime” liposuction, because of very small recovery period. Productivity of SmartLipo, however is also small, presenting advantages only in precise laser application, due to minimal processing areas, for under the arms (“batwings”), etc.

Vibration also makes liposuction more effective, because effect of vibration causes fat to remove faster and smother. Among vibration based liposuction techniques Nutational Infrasonic Liposculpture is a king. This technique combines advantages of all above mentioned and brings own: it tightens the skin, painless (working frequency is an additional anesthetic), do not carry risk of perforation and has quick recovery period. Since this is very new technique, you may not hear about it in many plastic surgery clinics and you may be assured that laser, ultrasonic or power assisted liposuction techniques are the best. Take these silly words as indication of level of qualification in that clinics; although to be honest, equipment is pretty expensive.

Among alternatives to liposuction I would list spa treatments such as seaweed wraps and “cellulite massages”, which promise to help break up fat cells and remove them from your body. However most of these techniques are not proven to work, and if they do show some ability to make your body look better, it is short-lived.

I do not want discuss here liposuction risks, despite the fact the title of this article is liposuction in details. Risks do not make sense for me if you understand technologies and can make weighted decision about clinics, doctor and technique. Right decision decreases risks, wrong one – does the opposite. Costs may also play important role, but can be reduced, if you make plastic surgery in some low cost country like Estonia or Latvia. For example, Villa Medica, is the only clinics in Baltics, which offers vibration based Nutational Infrasonic Liposculpture.

Price:from 575 EUR

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Liposuction surgery abroad

  • Duration of the surgery: 1-2 hours
  • Inpatient/outpatient: Depends on the extent of the surgery. The patient usually requires an overnight inpatient stay at the clinic.
  • Anesthesia: Spinal or general anesthesia
  • Recovery: You can go back to work in about a week, depending on how you feel. You should wait a couple to four weeks with strenuous activities. The swelling should go down completely after six months.
  • Possible side effects: Temporary swelling, aching, numbness and burning sensation in the incision area are possible.
  • Scars: The scars are permanent, but rather inconspicuous.
  • Risks: Like with every major surgery, this also includes risks such as hemorrhage, infection, scar tissue and reaction to anesthesia. Possible risks also include baggy skin and irregular position of hypodermic tissue; dehydration, fluid retention; skin injury.
  • Results: Permanent, if you keep your weight stable, eat a healthy diet and exercise.
  • Price: from 575 EUR
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