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- Walk in, Walk out Procedure. Liposculpture is a major refinement of the traditional technique of in hospital liposuction. Liposculpture is performed under local anaesthetic which makes it so much easier to achieve a regular and even result to the areas treated. This is because it is possible to stand up and allow the effect of gravity to be seen on the areas treated towards the end of the procedure. This in turn translates to much more predictable and aesthetically pleasing results.
- No General Anaesthetic. As no General Anaesthetic is needed for Liposculpture as opposed to traditional liposuction, the inherent risks associated with this are avoided.
- Less Discomfort, Less Bruising and Faster Recovery. Liposculpture involves the infiltration of special saline solution (called “Tumescent Anaesthetic”) into the fatty tissues before the procedure is performed. The fluid contains a local anaesthetic – lignocaine (the same anaesthetic used by dentists) and also a medication which effectively constricts small blood vessels in the fat – adrenaline. Adrenaline vastly decreases the amount of bruising that occurs with Liposculpture while the local anaesthetic produces effective relief of any discomfort during the procedure and for up to 12 hours afterwards.
- No Hospital Admission. Liposculpture is performed out of hospital. It is day surgery. There is no need for the patient having Liposculpture to stay overnight in hospital, have blood transfusions or even fluid intravenously. A half day only is required to perform the procedure, and you are encouraged to remain active following the procedure, walking on the following day or soon after and often returning to work within 3-5 days. Time off work and normal activities should be kept to a minimum. People often think they need to take holidays to have liposuction. This is not true.
- No cutting or suturing. Liposculpture is performed with very small cannulas, measuring 2 to 3 mm in diameter. Only very small incisions are required to allow passage of these cannulas into the fatty layer for suctioning of the fat. The small holes will heal on their own very quickly and do not require suturing.
Liposculpture takes time to achieve the best results. The average procedure lasts 3 hours or longer, especially when multiple areas are treated. In contrast, Liposculpture performed under general anaesthetic must be done in a shorter time as longer anaesthetic time increases anaesthetic risks.
People who have had both procedures say how well they feel after Liposculpture compared to traditional liposuction. The recovery period is shorter with much less bruising and there is minimal discomfort. Now Liposculpture is performed by many doctors from many specialities. At Vein Health Medical & Cosmetic, Dr Paraskevas has been specially trained in Liposculpture and will take the necessary time to get the right result for each person.
Bruising is minimal but does occur in most cases. It lasts for 10-14 days. Infections are theoretically possible but are extremely rare and antibiotics given before and after the procedure to prevent this. Local areas of numbness can occur but this settles over time.
This is a very broad question. What we are certain of is that many people will benefit from Liposculpture and the number of people having this procedure performed in Australia has increased dramatically over the past 5 years to the point that it is by far the most commonly performed cosmetic procedure. As Liposculpture is a technique to reshape and recontour areas of the body, people who will most benefit from this are those who have areas of stubborn fat that cannot be shifted with diet and exercise alone. These people may include but are not limited to:
- Women who have had children and are concerned by the unwanted accumulation of fat that child bearing has brought and that is resistant to the most rigorous gym workouts and exercise regimes. Post Pregnancy problem areas may include saddlebags, full thighs, hips, or just a “pot-belly”.
- Men who have developed love handles above the hips or accumulations of abdominal fat, not necessarily related to a lack of exercise, but often due to the natural decline in the production of growth hormone, which occurs with age.
- Men and Women who want to have a “streamlined” appearance and have the best shape that they possibly can. For such people the permanent removal of even small amounts of fat from localised areas can make a good figure dramatically better.
- Men who have unwanted accumulation s of fat over the breasts as a result of hereditary or other factors.
- Men and Women who have been significantly overweight, have lost weight and are now near their goal, but still have problems with localised accumulations that will not budge despite diet and exercise.
Liposculpture can be used to help people who are significantly overweight to reduce localised problems over the abdomen and other areas. This may help with the way that overweight people dress and make them feel better about their bodies. Many such people describe the Liposculpture Procedure as a “kick start” and go on to continue to lose weight, especially when these central abdominal fat cells are removed.
There is no theoretical age limit for the performance of Liposculpture provided that there are no significant health problems that may interfere with the medications used or with the recovery process.
As the cannulae used in this technique are very small, the incisions used can often be concealed in the natural creases of the body. The holes used are NOT stitched after the procedure and heal to a fine skin coloured line, approximately 2 mm in length, within a few months of the procedure. It is unlikely that anybody will guess from these healed incisions that you have had Liposculpture, unless, of course, you tell them.
Some people often mistakenly call local fatty accumulations over the thighs cellulite and these can definitely be helped with Liposculpture. True cellulite (localised dimpling of the skin, especially over the thighs and buttocks) is due to the distribution of fibrous bands within the fatty tissue. Attempts to divide these fibrous bands have been tried, but the level of success is variable. So at present, no technique can reliably treat this problem, though in situations where excess fatty tissue is also a problem, removal of this may well improve the overall appearance by making specific dimples less obvious. Once fibrous bands are divided, areas of dimpling can also be filled with autologous fat (fat grafting), improving the appearance.
The skin is a remarkable organ. A recent article, again published in the Dermatologic Surgery Journal confirmed what Liposculpture surgeons already know; and that is that there are very few problems with looseness of the skin after the procedure, even in people who are at the age of 40 or beyond. This is due to contraction of the skin as a result of the Liposculpture procedure itself. An experienced Liposculpture surgeon can produce skin retraction which would have been thought impossible by conventional surgeons even a decade ago. Skin contracts in all areas treated by Liposculpture and excision of any skin at all is almost never necessary. Skin Retraction can also be improved by the use of a Laser (Laser Lipolysis) during the Liposculpture Procedure.
- Age. It is important to once again emphasize that Liposuction is primarily a body shaping procedure, NOT a weight loss procedure. As with most procedures, Liposuction is obviously best performed earlier than later. Younger patients are usually healthier, more active and their skin elasticity is better making for faster and more fulfilling results. Practically speaking, Liposuction is a procedure that is performed on patients of all ages.
- Weight. One of the most common questions we get at our clinic is “Should I try and lose more weight before I see you Doctor?” The answer to this is often quite difficult and will vary from patient to patient. For those who are minimally overweight, but generally healthy, it may be preferable to have liposuction before the patient attempts to return to their ideal weight. The main reason for this is that the fat layer to be removed will be larger and easier to suction. On the other hand, patients who are extremely overweight, may be encouraged to begin a diet and exercise plan to allow for a safer procedure.
- Planning a Pregnancy. As with most elective cosmetic procedures, liposuction is contraindicated during pregnancy or breastfeeding. However, it is reasonable to suggest that females contemplating liposuction should have the procedure prior to pregnancy rather than delaying it until after. The integrity and elasticity of the skin is better prior to pregnancy in most cases, and this will allow for better results. Also, by removing the fat stores prior to pregnancy, these fat stores are less likely to expand during pregnancy and cause undue stress and stretch on the skin.