Liposculpture was originally conceived to eradicate ugly localised fatty bulges and thus improve body contour. The fat deposits are removed through thin metal tubes or cannulae using tiny incisions. A special syringe or a mechanical pump is used to create the suction required to remove fat out from the areas treated.
The most common areas that can be improved are the thighs, knees, neck, arms, breasts, abdomen, and flanks. This list is not exclusive as many other areas can also be treated by local removal of fatty tissue.
Liposculpture can be used to help give patients a start to a further exercise programme and weight loss. Treatment of the thighs may make exercise easier which may also help with weight loss. It is important to stress that liposculture complements the beneficial effects of exercise and eating a sensible diet, and both of these things are necessary if further weight loss is possible.
The aim with liposculpture is not necessarily to remove all the fatty tissue, but rather enough to make an area significantly slimmer in shape and appearance. Liposculpture does not completely tighten skin in all areas, or in all patients. It is best suited for people who are in good physical shape with firm and non-flaccid skin. For the few cases in the thigh where excess skin remains after the procedure, surgery may be needed to achieve a better cosmetic result.
How is it done?
Very low concentrations of local anaesthetic can be used to numb large areas of fatty tissue without needing to use general anaesthesia. The fatty tissue is put under a slight pressure by this fluid which forces it throughout the areas to be treated and allows it to be distributed evenly. Small amounts of adrenaline are used to vastly decrease bruising. This is called the “tumescent technique”. Small access points are used to introduce the small tubes necessary for the procedure, both to put the fluid in and to remove the fatty tissue. It is now possible for the procedure to be performed as an out-patient in a similar way to many other surgical procedures. As little blood is lost during the procedure no blood transfusion is necessary.
Liposculpture until recently was performed in a hospital under general anaesthesia. With the new techniques in the field using special local anaesthesia, use of tiny suction tubes, and even with several areas to be treated at one time, it can now be performed as an out‐patient procedure. This prevents a hospital stay of several days when multiple areas are treated, and eliminates the possibility of a blood transfusion, resulting in a procedure that is far safer and much less painful afterwards.
The fact that you will be awake and comfortable during the procedure means that you can sit and stand, and move into different positions, to make sure that the final result is smooth and free of irregularities. Although this may mean that your initial procedure will take longer to perform, it ensures that revisional procedures at a later date are extremely rare.
Why is it done?
Liposculture techniques are done for fine contouring of specific areas of the body. For the thighs they can be done to restore a more feminine look to the thighs, and create a more shapely figure. The fat taken from the thighs can be used to enhance another part of the body such as breasts or buttocks.
What should I do before?
We will give you detailed preoperative instructions, please follow them carefully. To maximise the benefits of your treatment our personally tailored pre operative natural therapies pack will be provided to you ahead of surgery to aid in healing and recovery.
It is essential that you have a support person with you on the day of your procedure, as you will require assistance with transportation. It is advised that your support person stay with you for at least 24 hours.
We recommend that you prepare your home environment to aid in your recovery. It is important that your recovery environment is clean and ideally pet free and prepared with items that you may require during this time to allow for rest and comfort.
Small steps can make a big difference when it comes to ensuring a smooth recovery. Thinking ahead and preempting your needs will help with the preparation process. Further things to consider include:
- Plugging in a nightlight so you can easily find your way to the bathroom at night.
- Ensuring that you have access to low preparation meals.
- Preparing your bed with lots of pillows to aid in positioning and minimising discomfort.
- Arrange for dependents to be cared for.
- Purchase all of your medications and dressings before your surgery, including antibiotics, antibacterial soap, a thermometer and ice packs to help reduce swelling.
- Staying well hydrated will also aid in your recovery so please ensure you have water within reach.
To further aid in healing and minimise complications, you are strongly advised to stop smoking, at least for 6 weeks before and 6 weeks after your surgery.
You will also be asked to provide a complete medical history for your surgeon including any health problems you have had, any medication you are taking or have taken, and any allergies you may have. Your surgeon will also advise you if any other tests are required, such as blood tests, X-ray examinations or ECGs.
You may be advised to stop taking certain medicines such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), aspirin, and medicines that contain aspirin. You may also be asked to stop taking naturopathic substances such as garlic, ginko, ginseng and St John’s Wort as they may affect clotting and anaesthesia. Always tell your surgeon everything you are taking.
What should I expect after?
You can usually drink fluids and eat a light meal within two or three hours after surgery. You may have some pain and discomfort, particularly around the procedure area. Your surgeon will help you with pain management as required.
Some bruising and swelling is normal, and may take up to a few weeks to disappear. Using pressure garments ill help to reduce the swelling. You may also experience some numbness of the skin, which is normal and usually temporary.
Depending on the extent of your procedure, you may need to take a few days off work to rest. Avoid heavy lifting, strenuous exercise, swimming and strenuous sports until advised by your surgeon.
What are possible complications?
The tumescent technique is a very safe technique and the incidence of side-effects is low. There is usually some discomfort for a few days after the procedure. This is usually limited to some soreness and stiffness. Persistent soreness or pain should be reported to the doctor. Numbness can also occur after the procedure which may take a few weeks to resolve. It is possible but extremely rare, to have persistent numbness in an area which has been treated, as all the instruments used are quite blunt and do not cut tissue in the same way as a surgical cut. Infection is extremely, but it can be a complication of any surgical procedure. This may require drainage through incisions and further antibiotic treatment. Likewise, blood clots in the legs and moving to the lungs may occur with any surgery, but as the length of liposculpture procedures is relatively short and the patient is moving throughout the procedure, this is extremely unlikely.
How much will it cost?
The cost depends on your choice of anaesthetics, the size of the area that needs treatment, the level of technical difficulty, the level of anaesthetic difficulty, and any combination therapies you may choose to have. The best way to get an exact cost is to arrange a consultation with your team at Luxe Clinic.
How much time off work will I need?
This depends of the size of the area to be treated, the amour of fat to be removed, your choice of anaesthetics, and your general healing capacity. In general, for smaller areas a few days off work will suffice, whereas healing for larger liposuction procedures can take a few weeks. We will give you a more accurate idea of your expected recovery time once we meet.