In 2013 over 360,000 liposuction procedures were performed in the United States, making it the most popular cosmetic plastic surgical procedure performed. 85% of those having liposuction were female and 15% were male. Over half of those having liposuction performed were between 35 and 50 years of age.1
With so many procedures being performed, I thought it would be a good idea to give some helpful tips for those thinking about undergoing liposuction.
- Do Your Research
- Have Realistic Goals and Expectations
- Follow Post Operative Instructions
- Ask Questions
- Feel At Ease With Your Doctor and The Staff
Do Your Research
Make sure that your physician is Board Certified. Search the American Plastic Surgery Society for the current status of the physician.
If the procedure is not being performed in a hospital, make sure the facility is accredited by one of the national accreditation organizations. The American Association for Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgery Facilities is the largest not-for-profit accrediting organization in the United States.
During your consultation the physician should discuss the procedures with you, examine you, and present treatment options. Make sure you see liposuction before and after pictures of patients on whom the surgeon has performed similar procedures. Find out what the total liposuction costs are and if there are any post-operative treatments to minimize healing times.
Have Realistic Goals
Liposuction is not a weight loss procedure but is a shaping procedure. Liposuction goes hand in hand with a sensible diet and exercise program and is not a replacement for them. Although fat removal is permanent with liposuction, poor eating habits can lead to weight gain. Liposuction is a shaping procedure. The results you can expect to achieve are dependent not only on the amount of fat that is removed, but on your skin elasticity as well. Liposuction is not a treatment for cellulite.
Follow Post Operative Instructions
After the procedure, your surgeon will give you a list of post-operative instructions. To have the best recovery, follow them.
Drink a lot of water. This will help keep you hydrated and help minimize post-operative nausea and vomiting.
Minimize salt intake. Less salt means less swelling.
Walk and stretch. Do not stay in bed. The more you move the faster you will recover.
Healing after liposuction takes time. In some instances it may take 6 to 8 weeks to see the results. It is best to have regular follow up visits with your surgeon.
While the surgeon may have performed these procedures thousands of times, this may be your first procedure, so ask questions. After the procedure, make sure you have a phone number to reach the surgeon after hours, in case you have any concerns during the post-operative phase.
Liposuction, just as all cosmetic surgery procedures, creates a physical as well as a psychological change. To optimize your experience, it is important to feel comfortable with the Surgeon, the staff, and the expectations of your results.
1Aesthetic Surgery Society – National Data Bank Statistics July 2014
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