Liposuction is a surgical operation in which unwanted fat is removed from under the skin to reduce inches. we’ll see some truth and myths about this procedure that are common among people. the myths should be dispelled so that proper use of this technology is beneficial to the people. The truth helps everyone identify whether liposuction will help him or her.

The myths about liposuction

1. Liposuction reduces weight ——-NO—–Liposuction is focused on loss of fat and loss of inches. The weight is contributed mainly by muscles and bones After the liposuction, the inch loss is much more visible than the weight loss on the scale. This is in fact better because we must have wrong bones and muscles; and less fat in the body. Liposuction helps us to look slimmer and still have healthy weight; or what doctors call lean body mass.

2. There is no need to follow diet and exercise once liposuction is done———NO—– Liposuction is not a substitute for good diet and exercise regime. Liposuction aims to remove the stubborn fat deposits on certain areas of your body that do not go away with proper diet and exercise. Whether you do exercise or not will decide how you can maintain the results of liposuction. Sometimes, in obese individuals, the overhanging fat on the tummy can be removed to limited extent to facilitate personal hygiene and to help them exercise better. This is called lipo- reduction. Even after lipo-reduction, you need to undertake good exercise and diet. Do visit your plastic surgeon every few months after liposuction. He or she will motivate you to maintain a healthy lifestyle

3. The skin invariably becomes loose after Liposuction—-NO– The thickness of the skin, the presence of stretch marks and the quality of the skin will determine if the skin will hang after liposuction. In a young patient, hanging of the skin is less likely. Specific techniques are used by the plastic surgeons during liposuction to prevent laxity of the skin. Power assisted liposuction and VASER can stimulate contraction of the skin. If pressure garment is used for the duration advised by your Plastic surgeon; the skin may retract well. It is a good idea to discuss in detail with your plastic surgeon whether the skin will be loose in the areas being treated or not. Sometimes your plastic surgeon may advise removal of the skin to avoid hanging skin. It is up to you to decide between scar and the loose skin. But in general, when a qualified plastic surgeon operates, the chances of skin retraction are good. Do see the photographs of pre and post-operative patients to understand that degree of skin retraction after liposuction.

4. Liposuction can be done in a clinic also —NO—It is a surgical procedure. Liposuction should be performed in an operation theatre with proper disinfection and sterilization by a qualified plastic surgeon. Liposuction requires good pain relief in the form of intravenous medicines at least; and anaesthesia most of the times. During liposuction, your blood pressure, pulse and urine output need to be measured. So, liposuction should be done in hospital setup to improve the safety of the procedure

5. Syringe liposuction of few millilitres everyday can get rid of the fat —-NO —–Daily removal of small amount of fat will not take you anywhere. Fat accumulates because there is excessive calorie intake and the calories are not spent. Little bit of fat removed everyday does not make a difference to the process of fat accumulation. In fact, it is quite dangerous to have a periodic syringe Liposuction done by unqualified people.

6. There may be permanent nutritional deficiency or weakness after liposuction—–NO—– Unlike bariatric surgery liposuction does not interfere with your intestines. So, there is no B12 deficiency or anaemia. Sometimes your haemoglobin may drop temporarily but it will always recover with medicines. There is no permanent nutritional handicap after liposuction. There is no irreversible change in your lifestyle. There is no compulsion to restrict your food intake as it happens in bariatric surgery because of liposuction. You need to follow calorie restriction only to stay healthy and maintain the results. In fact, bariatric surgery is meant for different type of fat people—those who have overall obesity and fat deposit inside the tummy and around intestines also. Liposuction is not a good procedure for overall obesity as is meant for removing fat under the skin only. So, in such patients, liposuction is not undertaken by qualified plastic surgeons. That is the very reason why you need to go to a plastic surgeon. He or she will clearly tell you whether you are a right candidate for liposuction or not.

The truths about liposuction

1. liposuction is a surgical procedure—- YES—– it is a surgical procedure and it should be done by a properly trained and qualified plastic surgeon. it should not be done in a clinic. it should be done only in a well-equipped operation theatre where all facilities are available to provide good pain relief, maintain the patient’s blood pressure and other parameters, where adequate sterilization facilities are used. When you opt for liposuction, please confirm that you are going for the operation with a plastic surgeon and at a clean well-equipped hospital facility.

2. liposuction is a painful operation –YES—— it is a painful operation and that is the reason why good Anaesthesia or pain relief must be provided to the patient. After liposuction also adequate pain relief through painkillers given in intravenous saline or through a catheter inserted for Anaesthesia. If very good pain relief is provided immediately after the operation the pain is not very severe later .it is very much bearable.

3. There is lot of swelling after liposuction—- YES—- liposuction can be there can be swelling after liposuction, but it can be taken care of; by restricting salt intake and giving medication to reduce the swelling.

4. The liposuction can be a life- threatening procedure. — YES, BUT VERY RARELY—patient for liposuction must be chosen very carefully. There should be no medical problems or if there are any medical problems, they must be well controlled. Ideally a physician should check the patient for safety of the procedure. Proper operation management, use of DVT pump, early mobilisation, adequate I V fluids are some precautions taken by plastic surgeons to avoid complications. Choose a qualified plastic surgeon with experienced team and a well-equipped hospital. But very rarely unfortunate incidences of fat or blood clot clogging the lungs have been reported. Every operation after all carries certain risk. The chances of complications are not higher than the risk of road accident.

5. Liposuction makes you healthy— YES— loss of inches improves your body posture, relieves the strain on your back and knees. It helps you to carry out rigorous exercises which otherwise would have damaged your knees. It helps you stay dry, clean and rash free by reducing overhang of fat on your abdomen and groin

Dr Medha Bhave

Disclaimer- The opinions expressed in this blog do not represent collective stand of the association.