One of the most popular cosmetic procedures in
the United States, liposuction is used to remove small pockets of
fat and re-sculpt the treated area. This procedure is suitable for
people who are at or near their ideal body weight and have an area
of fat that seems resistant to diet and exercise.
Signs of Aging Treated
Dermatologists use a procedure called “tumescent liposuction” to
safely and effectively remove fat from most areas of the body,
Tumescent liposuction also is used for
non-cosmetic purposes. It can effectively remove a fatty
noncancerous tumor (lipoma) or treat excessive sweating (hyperhidrosis).
Many patients prefer liposuction to surgical excision for treating
their lipomas because liposuction does not leave a scar. Surgical
excision is necessary when the tumor could be something other than a
When See Results from Liposuction
You will see some immediate change, and over a period of 6 to 12
months, there will be continual improvement.
People often notice better skin contour as their skin retracts. Even
people over 40 years of age see some skin retraction. If the neck or
jawline is treated, wrinkles on the face may diminish as the skin
To obtain the best cosmetic results, dermatologists recommend
maintaining a healthy weight, exercising regularly, and eating a
nutritious well-balanced diet.
The procedure used by dermatologists, which may be called
tumescent liposuction, is a mature procedure. This means that most
patients obtain predictable results while undergoing a safe and
effective procedure. Tumescent liposuction is considered extremely
effective for removing fat that remains despite diet and exercise.
Possible Side Effects
When liposuction was introduced, there was the potential for
some serious side effects including excessive blood loss and a long
recovery time. Advances in liposuction have eliminated these early
risks. Today, liposuction has an excellent safety record.
committed to maintaining this excellent safety record.
To demonstrate this commitment, the American Academy of
Dermatology Association was the first medical group to
publish guidelines of care for liposuction. These
guidelines recommend that:
Liposuction should not
be performed under general anesthesia;
It should be performed
on healthy individuals;
Liposuction is not a
procedure for the treatment of obesity and should
not be used to extract large amounts of fat; and
Liposuction should not
be performed along with other procedures.
Making sure that liposuction is
performed per these guidelines and following the post-procedure
instructions will significantly reduce the potential for side
effects. Possible side effects include infection, a dimpled texture,
loose skin, and excessive bleeding.
After the procedure, there is typically some bruising, swelling, and
discomfort. These are normal and temporary. Some people may see skin
darkening where an incision was made. This can be effectively
How Long Results Last
Liposuction can permanently eliminate stubborn fat from most
areas of the body. Exercising regularly, eating a well-balanced
diet, and staying at a healthy weight can help maintain results.
Even with weight gain, fat is less likely to accumulate in the
10 Questions to Ask Before a Cosmetic Procedure
Tumescent Liposuction (AAD pamphlet)
Academy of Dermatology, “The
Facts about Liposuction: Dermatologist Dispels Myths About the
Battle of the Bulge.” News release issued
October 13, 2004.
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Rapini RP et al, editors. Dermatology. 2nd
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