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Liposuction - Questions & Answers


Is Liposuction a treatment for obesity?
Liposuction surgery is not the treatment of choice for obesity. It is not an alternative to proper nutrition and exercise.


Who is a potential candidate?
There are no age or weight limits. Areas of localized fat are the best for liposuction surgery. The patients who see the best results are those who have a stable weight.

Patients who are happy with their weight but have localized bulges that they would like recontoured are also ideal candidates.

The ideal candidates for liposuction surgery are in good health, exercise on a regular basis (2 to 3 times a week) and have realistic expectation of the benefits of liposuction.


What are the most common areas of the body that benefit from this technique?
In women, the most commonly treated areas are the chin, neck, arms, back, abdomen, waist line, buttocks, thighs, and legs. In men, the most commonly treated areas are the breast, abdomen, love handles, and neck.


How is fat removed from the bulge areas?
By the use of a hollow tube (cannula) which has suctioning holes near its blunt end the cannula is inserted through a small 1/4" incision beneath the skin and into the fatty tissue overlying the muscles below. The cannula breaks up the fatty tissue, creating a honeycombing of the fat. A Vaccum pump connected to the other end of the cannula then evacuates the loosened fat cells through a series of openings at the end of the cannula. The smaller the cannula, the smaller the tunnels and the more even the reduction. The cannulas used by Dr. Reynolds are generally 2.0 to 3.0 mm in outside diameter. In Contrast, other surgeons often use cannulas 5.0 mm OR larger in size. After surgery, these tiny tunnels collapse resulting in an improved body contour.


Can the procedure be performed in an office setting?
Liposuction surgery is performed in our highly equipped in-office operating rooms. When using the Tumescent Technique general anesthesia is not necessary. With this technique multiple areas can be suctioned.


How are the benefits of liposuction measured?
The cosmetic success for liposuction relies on removing inches rather than pounds. In general, there is no significant weight change, yet dramatic change in silhouette is possible. Most important is the patient's satisfaction and increased self esteem.

What does "Tumescent" mean?
The word "Tumescent" means swollen or firm. This technique is accomplished by injecting a large volume of a dilute solution of lidocaine, a local anesthetic, epinephrine (a vasoconstrictive drug which shrinks capillaries), sodium bicarbonate (buffering agent), and solu-medrol (an anti-inflammatory agent which decreases inflammation following surgery). The patient's find local anesthesia so effective that they have reduced pain post operatively and in addition, no need for sedation or general anesthesia.


Will there be significant blood loss?
The epinephrine in the anesthetic solution causes diffuse capillary constriction that results in minimal blood loss during and after surgery.


How soon can I return to normal activities?
Home rest is necessary for the first twenty-four hours and then a light work schedule may be resumed. If sculpting is more extensive and performed in several areas, 2-3 days of recuperation may be necessary. Special elastic garments must be worn for 4 to 5 weeks after surgery. The rate of healing is accelerated as a result of the drainage of blood tinged anesthetic solution. Drainage minimizes bruising, reduces inflammation, and significantly accelerates healing.


How will my skin look after surgery?
Stretch marks, dimples, and ripples remain unchanged following surgery. The changes following liposuction are analogous to those one would expect if it were possible to lose an equal amount of fat in localized areas by dieting alone. Smaller cannulas allow the fibrous connections between skin and body to remain. They contract or shorten during healing. For this reason, excessive skin folds are rare and in fact, many patients who would have previously required surgical excision of skin (tuck) can have excellent results with liposuction alone.


Are there any scars as a result of the procedure?
Skin irregularities, lumpiness, hardness and dimpling may appear post-operatively. Most of these problems disappear with time, but localized skin firmness, lumpiness and or irregularities may be permanent. In dark skinned patients, hyperpigmented scars (dark to black scars) can occur and may be permanent. Other objectionable scarring such as keloids are possible. If loose skin is present in the treated area(s), it may or may not shrink to conform to the new contour.


Will there be bruising?
Yes, but bruising is greatly reduced because the local anesthetic solution contains epinephrine which constricts blood vessels, reducing bleeding and therefore bruising. The drainage of anesthetic solution following the Tumescent technique further reduces bruising as it contains blood cells that would otherwise remain under the skin and appears as a bruise. By minimizing bruising and swelling, the Tumescent technique accelerates the rate of healing.


Can fat re-accumulate in the suctioned areas?
It is the belief of the medical community that after puberty no further fat cells are produced. Therefore, the removal of fat cells after puberty via liposuction surgery is considered a permanent way to remove fat. At Centers for Health Promotion, LLC., we GUARANTEE that if the fat cells return to the suctioned area(s) within 5 years, we will re-suction you at supply cost only.


Will I require general anesthesia and or I.V. sedation?
NO. General anesthesia and I.V. sedation have inherent risks greater than those of local anesthesia alone. In fact, fatalities associated with general anesthesia are estimated to be one in ten thousand patients. Don't take unnecessary risk. AVOID GENERAL ANESTHESIA.


What complications may occur?
Surgical complications of liposuction are quite rare. As with any surgical procedure, liposuction is associated with common side effects such as bruising, swelling, and numbness, skin irregularities can also occur but reduced significantly by using smaller cannulas. Drug reactions an occur but can be rapidly reversed. Although cardiac arrest and pulmonary complications can occur, these problems if ever encountered will be managed Dr. Reynolds, as he has been Board Certified in Emergency Medicine since 1985. Other complications such as hematomas (collection of blood under the skin) can occur.

Rare but significant complications can occur with any surgery and include serious infection, narcotizing fascitis, pulmonary embolism (secondary to blood or fat embolism), fluid imbalance, excessive blood loss, anesthesia complications, perforated viscus, and death.

This information is not intended to frighten you, but rather to enable you to make your decision whether or not to liposuction surgery is for you. Following surgery, you should immediately report any signs of infection, bleeding around the incisions, or anything else that causes you concern.


Why don't more surgeons use the Tumescent technique?
One of the most significant factors in determining which technique a surgeon will use is time. From a surgeon's point of view, the surgery will take less time when a general anesthetic is used. Plastic and cosmetic surgeons commonly use general anesthesia.

Dr. Reynolds uses local anesthetic to perform liposuction surgery using the tumescent technique. The Tumescent technique is the best and safest way to undergo liposuction surgery.

Will all you initial free consultation, Dr. Reynolds will answer all questions and address any concerns you may have.

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