What is Liposuction?
Liposuction is a surgical technique that allows the plastic surgeon to contour and shape areas where excess fat deposits are of concern. Liposuction is not a weight loss alternative but can address area where residual fat remains a concern. If you are frustrated by fatty collections, then liposuction may be the solution. Liposuction can:
- Smooth out "bra rolls" "saddlebags""muffin tops" and other stubborn areas.
- Recontour areas such as the buttocks, belly or thighs
- Correct problem areas resulting from weight loss, pregnancy, or heredity
- Remove lumpy or saggy patches of fat on the lower face
- Emphasize a tighter, firmer and more flattering body shape
- Address problem areas also in men like: love handles, chest, abdomen and neck line.
Who are the Ideal Candidates?
The ideal candidates for liposuction have realistic expectations for the procedure. Patients should understand that liposuction is not a weight reduction technique. It is not guaranteed that liposuction will reduce cellulite. If you have sagging skin in your abdominal area, you may be more suited for tummy tuck surgery as liposuction does not tighten the skin. Ideal candidates for liposuction have the following qualities:
- good elasticity and muscle tone
- are at or near their ideal weight but have fatty areas resistant to diet and exercise
- are in good physical and mental health
- do not have a significant amount of loose skin
About the Procedure
At you initial consultation you will review your goals for the procedure with Dr. Stamatiou. Liposuction incisions are kept small and are made in hidden locations near treatment areas. Dr. Stamatiou can improve your shape using a combination of tumescent liposuction, and ultrasonic-assisted liposuction to achieve an individual's unique aesthetic goals. With the tumescent technique, large volumes of saline solution, local anesthesia and adrenaline are infused into the fatty area to be treated causing swelling. This enables the surgeon to manuever a small instrument called a cannula connected to a vacuum machine to suction away excess fat and improve body contour. The tumescent solution enables the liposuction to be performed with less blood loss and with minimal discomfort.
Ultrasonic -assisted liposuction (UAL) removes fatty tissue with the assistance of sound waves. Ultrasonic liposuction is a complement to traditional form of liposuction including the tumescent technique. UAL uses a specially designed cannula (a thin medical wand) that emits high energy sound waves to create vibrations within the fat that ruptures the wall of fat cells, and then liquified fat can be easily removed during the second step that uses tumescent liposuction. Ultrasonic energy acts primarily on the fat cells and has no effect on the vascular, or connective tissues around the excess fat deposits. With UAL we can achieve smoother liposuction results, remove difficult fibrous fatty deposits and aspirate more fat with minimal blood loss. UAL is ideal for areas of the body where fat is interspersed with fibrous tissue. The most frequent areas treated by UAL in men are the love handles, lower back and chest; in women, thighs, hips, buttocks, back and stomach. Since 1999, Dr. Stamatiou performs the Scarless Breast Reduction with the UAL. To learn more, read the Breast Reduction section.
Dr. Stamatiou is one of the only with the UAL machine in Greece and has extensive experience with this technology. In most cases he finds it to be a superior technique in terms of procedure time, recovery and results.
What is Recovery Like?
The length of surgery depends on the size and number of areas to be treated. Liposuction is typically performed under either twilight sedation or general anesthesia. For the majority of the patients, this is an outpatient procedure, therefore you go home after surgery. For out-of-town patients, we can recommend a number of hotels in close proximity to our facilities. You may also have some soreness and discomfort, which can be controlled with medication. The healing timeline depends on the extent of the surgery. Dr. Stamatiou emphasizes the importance of walking and performing moderate daily activities early on ,in your recovery. After your procedure, you will wear a compression garment to help ensure smooth results and healthy healing.
You should be able to return to most daily activities almost immediately. Full recovery will take a few weeks, although skin may take a few months to tighten fully.