in Los Angeles, CA
No matter what kind of shape you’re in, it’s likely you still have pockets of unwanted fat that are impervious to changes in diet or exercise. The human body has an irritating capacity to store these pockets of fat in areas such as the lower abdomen or the flanks. Liposuction was developed to get rid of these stubborn pockets of fat and slim the contour.
Dr. Lee performs tumescent liposuction at our Sherman Oaks practice.
What is liposuction?
Liposuction is not a new procedure, but it has come a long way from when it was first introduced to the United States in the 1980s. The original procedure was fairly violent. Patients had to be under general anesthesia, and doctors had to make a rather lengthy incision to insert a large cannula. These cannulas had to be moved back and forth quite aggressively to break loose and suction out the fat. Of course, this created a good deal of tissue trauma and subsequent bruising that could linger for months.
Today’s liposuction techniques with Dr. Lee are much easier on the body and much more targeted and effective. Liposuction is now usually performed with the patient under sedation or “twilight” anesthesia; it is an outpatient procedure performed right in our Sherman Oaks office. Cannulas are much smaller, requiring only very small incisions. Fat can be suctioned out very precisely without the uneven contours created by older methods. Recovery is easy and bruising is much less involved than even just a decade ago.
candidates for Liposuction
Patients sometimes assume liposuction would be a great method of weight loss, but that’s not the case. Liposuction is not weight-loss surgery; removing too much fat at one time is actually dangerous. Liposuction is meant to remove unwanted pockets of fat that tend to accumulate in areas resistant to dietary changes or exercise. These pockets are common on the lower abdomen, the upper thighs, the jowls, and other areas of the body. When Dr. Lee uses liposuction to remove these pockets of fat, this slims the contour of the treated areas.
Excellent candidates still have good elasticity in their skin. This enables the skin to easily tighten down to the slimmer contour once the underlying fat is removed. If the potential patient has sagged, stretched, loose skin, liposuction alone is not the best procedure, as it will leave an area of loose sagging skin, albeit with less fat underneath. In these cases, procedures that remove excess skin, such as a tummy tuck or an arm lift, are better options.
Otherwise, just about anyone, no matter what kind of shape they are in, has pockets of stubborn fat that they would like to remove. Liposuction is perfect for the job.
Liposuction Treatment Areas
Liposuction can be used to remove unwanted areas of localized fat from nearly any area of the body, and is most commonly used on the:
- Love handles
In many cases, more than one area can be treated during the same procedure in order to reduce operating costs and recovery times. Your doctor will develop an individualized treatment plan for you during your initial consultation.
How should I prepare for liposuction?
The preparations for this procedure are the same as with any surgery. You’ll need to stop taking aspirin or other anti-inflammatory medicines, as they can increase bleeding and subsequent bruising. You’ll need to stop smoking for at least two weeks prior to your procedure and two weeks afterward because smoking can inhibit healing. You’ll need to arrange to have someone drive you to and from our offices in Sherman Oaks. It’s also a good idea to have someone around your house or apartment for the first day after your liposuction.
The Liposuction Procedure
Liposuction is performed on an outpatient basis under local anesthesia. In most cases, a tumescent technique is used to help patients achieve their desired results through a much less invasive procedure. Ultrasound-assisted or laser liposuction techniques may also be used, depending on the amount of fat to be removed and the patient’s age and overall health.
During the procedure, several tiny incisions will be made while saline and a local anesthetic are injected into the area to expand and firm the fat, making it easier to remove. A small, thin tube called a cannula is then inserted through the incisions to suction out the fat.
No stitches are needed after liposuction since the incisions are small enough to heal on their own. The entire procedure usually lasts from one to three hours, depending on the amount of fat being removed.
results Of Liposuction
Dr. Lee’s goal with these procedures is to contour the treated areas. You’ll be able to notice the difference immediately, although you’ll have some swelling and the treated areas will be covered either with compression bandages or compressions garments. The compression helps the skin adhere to its new slimmer contours, and it lessens swelling and bruising. Recovery is not difficult after modern liposuction, and your skin will begin to tighten down quickly.
By removing the stubborn fat on areas such as the abdomen, Dr. Lee helps patients achieve contouring they may not have seen since their teenage years. These are very satisfying procedures. Plus, the incisions she makes are so small they can be closed without the need for sutures, usually only requiring Steri-Strip bandages. These tiny incisions become virtually invisible in a few months.
Liposuction Before & After
Liposuction Patient Testimonial
“I had a fantastic experience at Dr. Lee’s office when I had my liposuction procedure done. Her office staff makes you feel at ease when you arrive. Dr. Lee and her staff are extremely knowledgeable, attentive and thorough before, during and after the procedure. Dr Lee called me after the procedure to check in with me to make sure I was doing okay. I would recommend her to any of my friends and family. I’m very happy that she helped make my “problem” areas disappear! Thank you Dr. Lee.” *Individual results may vary
– K.S. Los Angeles, CA
Are my results from liposuction permanent?
Liposuction permanently removes fat cells. Humans typically have a set number of fat cells. These cells become enlarged and shrink with weight gain and loss. Liposuction removes fat cells, and they are gone for good. This diminishes the body’s ability to store fat in the treated areas again. If you don’t gain a ton of weight, you will not build new fat cells and you will maintain your results for the remainder of your life. Dr. Lee stresses the importance of taking care of yourself after liposuction, and if you maintain a healthy lifestyle, you’ll be thrilled with your new slimmer contour for the duration.
After the liposuction procedure, patients will be able to return to work and other regular activities as soon as they feel comfortable, which is usually after a few days. Exercise and other strenuous activities should be avoided for a few weeks. It is not uncommon to experience mild swelling, bruising and discomfort in the treated area, which can be reduced through pain medication and the use of compression garments. Your doctor may also place drainage tubes in the area to collect any fluid for the first few days after treatment.
What is scarring like after liposuction?
The beauty of modern liposuction with Dr. Lee is that the procedure is so much less traumatic and invasive than it was just a couple of decades ago. The cannulas used by Dr. Lee are quite thin, and she doesn’t have to move the cannula back and forth as aggressively as in those earlier procedures. Plus, the tumescent solution, which contains saline, epinephrine, and lidocaine, works to constrict the blood vessels for less bleeding and bruising and it facilitates the fat cells breaking loose for easier removal. Because of all that, Dr. Lee only makes very short incisions to gain access to the target areas. These are so small they don’t usually require sutures. They heal and become virtually invisible within a few months.
Is liposuction painful?
As discussed above, modern liposuction with Dr. Lee is not overly aggressive. We locally anesthetize the treatment areas, plus the tumescent solution used has lidocaine in it to act as an additional local anesthetic. There isn’t any pain during the procedure.
There can be some slight soreness afterward for a couple of days, but this is not acute pain. Most of our patients feel it can be managed with over-the-counter pain medication.
Is liposuction safe?
Liposuction is usually one of the top three cosmetic surgeries performed every year in the U.S. It has been performed for approaching 40 years in the U.S., and each year techniques continue to make it easier and easier on the patient. The incisions Dr. Lee makes to access the target areas are so small they don’t require sutures, making any risk of infection very low. These are safe, satisfying procedures.
How Much Does Liposuction Surgery Cost?
The cost of liposuction varies based on the individual needs of the patient. We invite you to contact our office so we can better understand your goals for liposuction weight loss surgery. Dr. Lee and her staff have extensive experience and can provide a customized quote of what you can expect the cost to be after your initial consultation. Call today to begin your journey to a healthy, happier version of you!
Risks Of Liposuction
Liposuction is considered a safe procedure with only minimal downtime and a low occurrence of mild side effects. However, as with any kind of treatment, there is a risk of complications such as infection, scarring, allergic reactions, hematoma or unsatisfactory results. Liposuction is one of the most commonly performed cosmetic procedures and is almost always performed with no serious complications.Patients can reduce these risks by choosing an experienced doctor to perform their procedure and by following their doctor’s instructions before and after treatment.