TREATMENT TIME: 1.5-3 HOURS
RECOVERY TIME: AROUND 6 WEEKS
POPULARITY: 1.6 MILLION GLOBAL PROCEDURES IN 2017
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Everything you need to know about Liposuction
What is Liposuction?
Liposuction is a technique designed to remove unwanted fatty deposits from a particular area of the body. The treatment involves a cannula being inserted through tiny incisions in the skin, with the fat being removed via a suction device.
Why do people have Liposuction?
Contrary to some beliefs, liposuction isn’t about drastic weight loss! Rather, liposuction is designed for those who have stubborn areas of fat that simply won’t shift through conventional methods like diet and exercise. The body has an inborn tendency to place fat in specific areas and this can leave patients feeling as though they have a disproportionate shape. Liposuction is ideal for those who want to create a smoother, more balanced silhouette.
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How much does it cost?
This procedure cost between £2,500-7,500 plus the cost of any consultations or follow-up care that may not be included in the price.
If you need to find prices near you, please click here.
Because Liposuction is an elective cosmetic surgery, you are unlikely to get the surgery with NHS or covered through insurance. We can help you find financing plans to make the procedure more affordable.
What are the key drivers for the cost of liposuction?
Liposuction costs can widely vary depending on the surgeon’s experience, the number of areas treated, type of procedure used, anesthesia, the geographic location and operating room facilities.
Generally, higher surgeon experience and location in an area with a high cost of living, would generally mean higher costs. At the same time, higher experience may translate into lesser risks for you.
Liposuction can be performed on the stomach, hips, thighs, buttocks, arms and neck. As such the cost of the surgery varies depending on the number of areas treated.
Am I a good candidate?
As mentioned, liposuction isn’t about shedding the pounds on a vast scale and, as such, you are generally considered to be a good candidate if you are within 30% of your ideal weight. Those who store weight disproportionately on the thighs, bum, stomach and hips will get the best results from the treatment. Another key factor to consider is your skin tone. You will need to have firm, elastic skin and good muscle tone to undergo the procedure. From a wider health perspective, as with all cosmetic treatments, you should be in good health and avoid smoking prior to surgery.
It is also important that your weight is stable. If you are planning to lose a significant amount of weight or even gain weight (for example, due to pregnancy), this is not the time to undergo liposuction. Finally, it is very important that you are in good health, have a positive attitude and realistic expectations, before undergoing this procedure.
What are my options?
In Liposuction, small, thin, blunt-tipped tubes (cannula) are inserted through small incisions in the skin. The surgeon moves these tubes under the skin to target fat deposits and then suction them out.
Liposuction can give quite dramatic, highly accurate and much longer lasting results. However, there are non-surgical alternatives if surgery is not an option or when you just need a little extra help to better define some stubborn spots, Ultimately the choice should be made in consultation with your plastic surgeon. This part of the website focuses on surgical Liposuction only.
How long does the surgery take?
The surgery usually takes 1.5-3 hours depending on the procedure type and surgical technique used.
Liposuction is usually performed on an outpatient basis, but an overnight stay may be required if your surgery involves large volume of liposuction and multiple sites.
Is Liposuction painful?
Liposuction surgery is not painful as it is performed under anesthesia (commonly local anesthesia or intravenous sedation and occasionally under general). You may experience some pain once the anesthetic wears off after your surgery and may have some swelling or redness. In some cases, the swelling will remain for weeks or even months.
Are there any risks I should look out for?
All surgical procedures have some degree of risk. Significant complications from liposuction are infrequent. Some risks specific to liposuction are outlined below:
- Contour irregularities
How do I find a surgeon I can trust for my Liposuction?
Choosing your surgeon is a hugely important step. This is THE person who is going to help you achieve the change you want and trusting in their abilities is key. Here are the three top things to consider when making your selection:
This should be done by a Plastic Surgeon who has a FRCS (Plast) or FRCS qualification and should be on the Uk’s General Medical Council (GMC) specialist register for plastic surgery. This ascertains that your cosmetic surgeon has received six years of training in plastic surgery on top of their general medical training.
Make sure your surgeon is experienced in liposuction. The field of cosmetic medical treatments is rapidly advancing, whether it is the latest treatment techniques, products or services, an experienced surgeon is the best way to ensure comfort, safety, and satisfaction.
You are putting your trust in another individual and that means you need to find a practitioner that makes you feel in safe hands. Personality and respect is key, make sure you have a strong connection with your practitioner and that they listen to you and give honest, open advice in good measure.
We can help you find a surgeon you can trust. Click here to get started.
What does the initial consultation entail?
After finding a surgeon who is experienced in performing liposuction, you will need to make an appointment for your consultation.
During your consultation, your surgeon will discuss your goals and medical condition, and evaluate you as a candidate for liposuction. Your plastic surgeon will evaluate the elasticity of your skin and discuss your ideal weight and your future pregnancy plans. You surgeon may also take photographs of the areas to be treated for your medical record. Please go prepared and ask all your questions.
The session generally lasts between 30 to 60 minutes and at the end of the session your surgeon may recommendation a treatment plan and you may be able to book the surgery.
Make sure that the consultation you attend is with the Plastic Surgeon. This is to be distinguished with free consultations offered by many places with Nurses or Patient Advisors/ Coordinators whose consultations are actually a pre-consultation before you see a Plastic Surgeon. Generally, because of the in-depth nature of the consultation with a surgeon, there is a cost associated with this initial appointment.
What is a Liposuction Cooling off period?
Liposuction surgery is an important decision. It is essential that you are making the appropriate choice and understand all the implications of the surgery. If you are not offered a cooling-off period of around 2 weeks, or you are put under pressure to proceed, you should walk away and look elsewhere.
Would I be required to do anything prior to the surgery?
In advance of your procedure, your surgeon will ask you to:
- Stop smoking at least six weeks before undergoing cosmetic surgery to better promote healing.
- Avoid taking aspirin and certain anti-inflammatory drugs that can increase bleeding.
- Regardless of the type of surgery to be performed, hydration is very important before and after surgery for safe recovery.
What is the recovery like?
Your surgeon will give you detailed care instructions, including normal symptoms you will experience, potential signs of complication, and the level and type of activity that is safe. The amount of time it takes for recovery varies greatly among individuals, but the below gives a broad idea:
The first week
Try to walk as soon as possible to avoid any swelling. The first 48 hours after surgery, you will experience swelling and bruising. The swelling is maximal at 48 hours after surgery and mostly disappears within 2-3 weeks, but there may be slight residual swelling for up to 4 months. Bruising is normal and typically disappears within 7-10 days.
Two to six weeks
Avoid strenuous exercise for 4-6 weeks because it can trigger unnecessary fluid retention in the treated areas. You should wait a minimum of 6 weeks before any sun or exposure, including sunbathing, because of the possibility of swelling. You will wear a compression garment over the treated areas for 4-6 weeks to control swelling and promote skin contraction.
You should expect to wait at least several months to get an accurate picture of the results of your surgery. The small incisions used for access will fade over a number of months usually becoming barely visible. For 6-9 months, you may experience a fluctuating return of ten to 15 percent swelling with exercise or excessive activity. It is important to see your doctor as scheduled. Follow-up visits will continue for several weeks and then after several months at prescribed intervals.
How long do the results last?
The results of liposuction surgery permanent. However, your body shape and contours might be affected by weight gain, aging, pregnancy, family genes and lifestyle factors. It is crucial to maintain healthy habits and a stable weight to maintain liposuction results.