Liposuction, also called suction-assisted lipectomy or SAL, is a cosmetic surgery procedure performed at Dr. Donna Rich’s Houston plastic surgery office 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. 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.
Good Candidates For Liposuction
Houston men and women who are in good health, within normal weight for their height, and with normal skin tone, 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. 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. During your private consultation, Dr. Rich will review both 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. During your liposuction 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.
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. 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 An Sal Procedure
After surgery, you will wear the compression garment 24 hours a day for up to two weeks, and another 4 weeks while active. The degree of discomfort varies among individuals and with 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 4-6 weeks after your procedure. Full activity is achieved at 2-3 weeks post-operatively. Dr. Rich will see you every week for the first month.
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 notice the results?
The patient will notice results right away. There will be swelling, with the final results usually seen by 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 after surgery to continue to regulate your weight.
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.
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 Twitter for the latest information about Houston cosmetic surgery options and developments!
We look forward to seeing you in the near future so you can see the “new you” in your near future!