Liposuction, also called suction-assisted lipectomy or SAL, is a cosmetic surgery procedure performed at board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Donna Rich’s Houston plastic surgery office. Liposuction is performed to remove excess subcutaneous fat virtually anywhere on the body, including the abdomen, love handles, back, buttocks, knees, inner and outer thighs, beneath the chin and/or neck.
Good Candidates For Liposuction
Houston men and women who are in good health, within normal weight for their height, and have good skin elasticity, can benefit from liposuction to reduce exercise and diet-resistant fatty deposits on the body. Unfortunately, those with less elastic skin may show some wrinkling or irregularity after a liposuction procedure, even with Dr. Rich’s superior technical skills with SAL.
SAL is for localized fat deposits only; it is not a weight-loss method for general obesity. Because we are all born with a defined number of fat cells, removal of fat cells via liposuction will permanently eliminate fatty deposits in the treated areas.
For those with loose skin in the belly area, stretch marks, or lax abdominal muscles, a tummy tuck can be a better choice, as it will remove the fat and tighten the skin and muscles in the same procedure.
The Liposuction Consultation
During your private consultation a thorough history will be taken and an examination of your area(s) of concern will be performed to confirm whether liposuction is the correct procedure for you. Dr. Rich will tell you about your options and discuss the anticipated anesthesia, potential risks, and your expected recovery. Dr. Rich’s plastic surgery office is located in Webster, TX, convenient to Houston, Galveston, Clear Lake, and Pearland.
How Liposuction Is Performed
All liposuction procedures are performed in Dr. Rich’s office-based accredited operating suite under general anesthesia. If a very small area is to be treated, local anesthesia (with or without added sedation) could be an option. This will have been discussed and confirmed in advance at your consultation.
Once general anesthesia has been instilled, Dr. Rich will make tiny incisions into the area to be treated. A solution will be placed into the treated areas to allow the liposuction to proceed as quickly and safely as possible.
After the procedure is completed, steri-strips or tiny sutures will be applied and a soft dressing will be placed around the incisions. Depending on the amount of liposuction performed and the location of your liposuction procedure, you may be given a compressive garment to wear to aid in recovery.
What To Expect After Liposuction
After surgery, you will wear the compression garment 24 hours a day for up to two weeks, and another four weeks while active. The degree of discomfort varies among individuals and based on the amount of liposuction performed, but most of our Houston liposuction patients are up and about the same day or the day after their liposuction procedure.
If you are having a significant amount of liposuction performed, Dr. Rich will prescribe pain medicine and antibiotics prior to your procedure. Mild activity, such as walking, is encouraged. However, you should refrain from lifting or any other strenuous activity for at least four to six weeks after your procedure. Full activity is achieved at two to three weeks post-operatively. Dr. Rich will see you every week for the first month.
I am very pleased with the results of my procedure(tummy tuck and lipo of flanks). Dr. Rich is an amazing doctor and her staff is equally amazing. Five stars from me.
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Frequently Asked Questions
What is tumescent liposuction?
Tumescent liposuction involves injecting a salt solution containing a local anesthetic and epinephrine into the areas to be treated. This solution shrinks the blood vessels and allows the fat to be removed more easily.
This technique results in less blood loss and a faster recovery. In addition to tumescent liposuction, Dr. Rich uses a technique called power-assisted liposuction, which also reduces bruising, swelling, and post-op recovery time.
How long will it take to see results?
The patient will notice results right away. However, there will be swelling. Final results are usually seen after six to nine months.
How long is the recovery time?
Most patients can return to work within five to seven days.
Are the results of liposuction permanent?
The results can be permanent if you continue to exercise and lead a healthy lifestyle. It is not a weight-loss procedure, so it is important to continue to regulate your weight after surgery.
Will I gain weight in other areas of the body after liposuction?
Patients can gain weight in other areas, or the fat can redistribute itself without necessarily changing the scale. The areas that were treated are more resistant to weight gain, because a number of fat cells were removed. Therefore, it is important to exercise and watch your weight after any liposuction procedure.
Schedule a Consultation
If you have questions about a liposuction at our Houston plastic surgery practice, please call our office at (281) 286-1000 or complete our discreet online form for your cosmetic surgery consultation. Visit us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram for the latest information about Houston cosmetic surgery options and developments!