Liposuction is one of the most popular body contouring procedures in the world. It is often thought of as a quick and easy way to get rid of unwanted fat and weight. Throughout the time in our practice, we’ve heard several myths surrounding liposuction procedure. These myths often lead to misunderstanding of what exactly liposuction is. We’ve selected five liposuction myths to address that are either old or incorrect information and have given a detailed answer as to why they are untrue. Here are the most surprising myths related to liposuction.
Myth #1: Liposuction is a Good Weight Loss Tool
Liposuction is not for weight loss and will not change your weight significantly. Some patients will see a small amount of weight loss after liposuction procedure, normally 1-7 pounds. Liposuction is for targeted fat loss (stubborn fat pockets) and is used to improve body contour or shape. If you are far outside your ideal bodyweight and liposuction is performed, it is likely not produced an unsatisfactory outcome and also increase the amount of loose skin you have. Liposuction works best on patients who are at a stable weight and need help with a problem area or areas. Liposuction physically removes fat so it is important candidates have good skin tone and elasticity. Good skin elasticity provides a smooth contour after fat is removed. Our patients who receive liposuction are often more motivated to continue with a healthy diet and exercise routine after surgery. This allows patients to maintain their weight or even lose more weight.
Myth #2: Fat Will Return
Liposuction removes some, but not all fat cells from the area in which the surgery was performed. Fat cells that are removed are gone forever. However, if one gains weight after surgery, fat can go to the remaining cells and other parts of the body. If the patient gains a significant amount of weight, new fat cells can develop. It is best to maintain a healthy weight after the liposuction procedure. The ideal candidate for liposuction is one who eats healthy and exercises on a regular basis. This is extremely important to maintain and even improve the patient’s results.
Myth #3: Liposuction Gets Rid of Cellulite
No, liposuction does not get rid of cellulite. Cellulite is the fat right below the surface of the skin tethered to the deep layer of the skin. I looks bumpy and uneven and some think of it as unattractive. Liposuction works on the deeper layer as cellulite is superficial. Occasionally liposuction can accentuate cellulite. The best way to diminish cellulite is to exercise and build up muscle.
Myth #4: You’re Too Old for Liposuction
Liposuction is not for everyone, but age alone is not a contraindication to this surgical procedure. Poor health is. The first step in determining if you’re not a candidate for a procedure like liposuction is to schedule a consultation with a plastic surgeon. If you are in good health, active and have few medical issues, you are likely to be a good candidate for liposuction. But it is important to keep in mind that skin contraction and elasticity at the age of 60 is not likely to be the same as a thirty year old.
Myth #5: You Can Go Back to Work and Exercise Right Away
The answer to this myth is simply no. Most patients return to non-strenuous work within 1 – 2 weeks depending on the number of areas treated and the volume of fat that was removed. Return to strenuous activities is between 4 – 6 weeks. Full recovery from swelling and bruising typically takes 3 – 6 months or more. A compression garment must be worn 24 hours a day for up to 3-4 weeks, then 12 hours/day for the next 3-4 weeks. This helps reduce swelling and ensure proper healing.