Liposuction : The Reality

Popularly known as the weight loss method of choice of the rich and famous, and a panacea for self confidence issues, liposuction has become a glorified means to an end. However, not too many people are well informed of the procedure and what it entails. What many do not know is that liposuction is an elective procedure: meaning, there are specific requirements to be a suitable candidate. Prior to the operation, one should look into these and see if you qualify. Your attending surgeon should inform you of the possible liposuction risks and the side effects which you may contract and hopefully decrease all possibilities early on.

What Is Liposuction?

Liposuction, also called lipoplasty, liposculpture suction lipectomy, or lipo is a type of cosmetic surgery which breaks up and “sucks” fat from various parts of the body, most commonly the abdomen, thighs, buttocks, neck, chin, upper and back of the arms, calves, and back. The fat is removed through a hollow instrument – a cannula – which is inserted under the skin. A powerful, high-pressure vacuum is applied to the cannula.

What are the uses of liposuction?

Liposuction is mainly used to improve how a person looks, rather than providing any physical health benefits. In many cases, the person would probably achieve the same results, and sometimes better ones, if they adopted a healthy lifestyle: good diet, regular exercise and a good night’s sleep every night.

When you gain weight each fat cell increases in size and volume. Liposuction reduces the number of fat cells in isolated areas. How much is removed from a specific area depends on its appearance and the volume of fat. Contour changes resulting from liposuction can be long-lasting, as long as the patient’s weight does not increase.

Liposuction is sometimes used to treat certain medical conditions, including:

  • Lymphedema – a chronic (long-term) condition in which excess lymph (fluid) collects in tissues, causing edema (swelling). The edema commonly occurs in the arms or legs. The fluid accumulation occurs faster than it can be drained away. Liposuction is sometimes used to reduce swelling, discomfort, and pain. However, doctors tend only to use liposuction with patients who have severe symptoms. After the operation patients are required to wear a compression bandage for several months, sometimes up to a year.
  • Gynecomastia – sometimes fat accumulates under a man’s nipples. Liposuction can remove some of the fat, reducing the swelling. People whose skin lacks elasticity may end up with loose-looking skin in areas where the procedure was done.
  • Lipodystrophy syndrome – fat accumulates in one part of the body as it is lost in another. Liposuction can improve the patient’s appearance by providing a more natural looking body fat distribution.
  • Extreme weight loss after obesity – if a morbidly obese person has lost at least 40% of his/her BMI (body mass index) after perhaps a gastric band or bypass procedure, excess skin and other abnormalities may need treatment. Sometimes liposuction is used to correct abnormalities.

What are the Risks of liposuction?

In any type of cosmetic surgery including liposuction, the dangers and risks include reactions to the anesthesia, blood clotting, infections, and of course blood loss. Even in laser liposuction or chin liposuction issues still are possible. This includes scars, bruises, part of the skin going numb, even change of skin pigmentation on some parts of your skin. The liposuction risks are as follows:

  • Friction burns
  • Extended healing time – you might wonder why your scars aren’t healing very fast.
  • Fat or blood clots – clots can migrate to your lungs, which will eventually lead to death.
  • Damage to the skin and body nerves
  • Allergic reaction to the anesthesia or the medications given
  • There are also dangers in excessive sessions of liposuction. Some of these are sagging of the skin, a lumpy appearance, and unattractive scars.

The human body simply won’t shed excess body fat without engaging in regular physical exercise. Physical exercise gives you a much higher metabolism; it helps you burn calories, even while you’re sitting or sleeping. One must also bear in mind that there is a limit to the quantity of fat which can be safely removed.What isn’t news is that liposuction doesn’t do anything for you long term except cost you time and money. Improving your lifestyle would do more for you without the high cost. While liposuction surgery may damage structures under the skin, the notion that your body decides where to allow fat to congregate isn’t new either.

Perhaps the only good thing about liposuction risks is that they are hardly life threatening. People enduring liposuction, often succumb to common misconceptions of what liposuction is and does. It doesn’t alter your blood chemistry, your cardiovascular health, or your level of physical fitness. Meaning that you are just as unhealthy after the surgery as you were before, even though you may physically show less body fat.

Living a better lifestyle, eating more fruits and vegetables while avoiding too much processed meat, getting regular exercise and plenty of sleep, as well as skipping excessive alcohol and processed food consumption – can all do for you naturally what liposuction does artificially. The results will last far longer – a lifetime, even, and with far less risk and a much less chance of having that fat return.

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