The Liposuction Procedure
Liposuction is an outpatient procedure and is performed under local anesthesia known as tumescent, right in the sterile surgery room at our office. Although using tumescent anesthesia may limit the ability to remove vast amounts of fat at one time, it does provide for a safer procedure with a faster recovery time. Prior to surgery the area to be treated is sterilized and the patient is covered in surgical towels or drapes. The tumescent anesthesia is injected into the area to be liposuctioned, and then two or more tiny incisions (typically 2-3 millimeters in size) are made as the place of entry for the cannula (long, thin tube that is used to remove the fat). The incisions are so small that stiches are not needed. Tickle Lipo is generally a comfortable procedure, with most patients feeling no more than a “tickle” sensation. After the procedure, patients are immediately put into a compression garment, which feels like a medical grade “Spanx”, and assists in reducing the swelling as quickly as possible.
Liposuction Recovery and Results
Although there may be post-procedure swelling, most patients see the majority of their ultimate liposuction results within one to three months after surgery, although final results can take up to six months. Once the fat is excavated in the treated area it should not return or migrate to other parts of the body, provided the patient maintains a healthy diet and lifestyle. If you experience weight gain or loss, it should be evenly distributed over your entire body, but fat accumulation in a previously treated area is typically less proportionate than in untreated areas. Tickle Lipo patients also report that the skin in the treated area feels tighter and firmer.
Patients may experience mild redness, tenderness, swelling or tissue firmness in the treated areas, which may last up to several weeks. Generally, all that is needed to relieve tenderness is acetaminophen or mild anti-inflammatories, such as Ibuprofen. Using a cold compress early on, followed by hot compresses later, may also be beneficial. Gently massaging the area twice a day for five to ten minutes is extremely important, and will definitely help to enhance your results. Some bruising may be possible, but will resolve fairly quickly. Normal daily activity, including exercise, may be resumed immediately post-treatment, or as soon as one feels comfortable. Actually, light physical activity, along with proper hydration, will help mobilize fat via the lymphatic system and help to improve your results
Cost of Liposuction
The cost of in-office liposuction performed under local anesthesia is fairly consistent across the board and is more affected by the area size and volume of fat to be removed, than by the energy source or brand name being used. Patients can generally expect to pay between $3,000 – $7,000 for fat reduction in the most popular areas treated. The tiniest of areas/fat volume, such as the chin, knees or arms, will generally cost somewhat less. Patients receiving traditional liposuction in a hospital or surgery center setting under general anesthesia should expect to pay quite a bit more than this range.