Facial Plastic Surgeon Babak Azizzadeh, MD and fellow extracting fat for facial fat transfer procedure

Liposuction is the process of suctioning out excess fat to improve one’s body figure, often performed on the abdomen, hips, thighs, face, and buttocks.

What is it?

Liposuction is a cosmetic surgical procedure where excessive fat is removed from under the skin by a suction process. A small incision is made, through which a cannula tube is inserted to break up fat cells and suction them out. Liposuction is one of the most common cosmetic procedures in the U.S.

What should I do to prepare?

To prepare for liposuction, patients should refrain from eating or drinking after midnight the night before surgery as. Patients should arrange for transportation to and from the hospital. Patients should shower the morning of the procedure, but should refrain from using lotions, deodorants, powders, or creams before the surgery.

What happens during the process?

Local and general anesthetics are applied to sedate the patient according to the severity of the procedure. The surgeon then makes small incisions and insert a suctioning device inside this incision. The suction pump removes the extra fat, and the length of the procedure depends on how much fat is removed. The patient may be discharged on the same day if the procedure is minor, but typically, involves an overnight stay.

What are the risks and potential complications?

Liposuction doesn’t prevent weight gain, and fat may accumulate in non-treated areas if a healthy diet and exercise plan is not implemented.  Rare cases of infection, uneven skin contours, and skin discoloration may arise, but is less likely in minor procedures. Irritation, minor scarring, temporary swelling, bruising, soreness, and numbness can also occur around the treated region.


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