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Frequently Asked Questions About Lipo

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Common Liposuction Questions:

Author: Letty's Staff Writer

In this article we will answer the common questions about liposuction that should be answered long before you undergo the knife.

This three-part article takes an in-depth view of liposuction - before, during, and after the surgery.

We've given you answers to questions about liposuction surgery that will help prepare you for your initial interview with a potential surgeon. We are you with the information that will make you an equal partner in your liposuction surgery.

Our ultimate goal is to help make your liposuction experience a good one...

So let's get started answering your lipo questions.

What is liposuction?

Questions About Lipo: Answer #1

Liposuction is the surgical removal of small amounts of superficial and resistant fat (fat that remains after dieting and exercising) – using a surgical suctioning device called a cannula.

Question About Lipo...

How much does it cost?

Questions About Lipo: Answer #2

Liposuction will cost anywhere from $3000 to $4000 or more depending on what specific areas of the body you are addressing.

Other factors that will influence the cost of your procedure are: whether or not you are having other surgery done at the same time, the area of the country or world in which your procedure will take place, whether or not you're male or female, and the experience-level of your surgeon.

There is no one set cost of liposuction. Expect to pay more or less depending on the above factors.

When is it done?

Questions About Lipo: Answer #3

Liposuction is done after diet and exercise have been tried and are not successful in addressing small pockets of resistant fat – that will not be addressed with more conservative methods.

Liposuction is typically done on patients who are not obese, are non-smokers, relatively fit and healthy individuals.

What are the benefits of the procedure?

Questions About Lipo: Answer #4

The benefits of the procedure are that you may be able to address/correct areas of resistant fat on the body that are not easily addressed with diet and exercise alone.

What are the potential risks of the procedure?

Whenever you have major surgery you are at risk for complications.

In other words – there is no surgery that is 100% risk free. And although liposuction is a relatively uncomplicated procedure – some patients/others have been unfortunate enough to experience the following ill consequences:

  1. Infections from bacteria or fungus.
  2. Blood clots or fat clots traveling to sensitive organs such as the lungs or brain.
  3. Puncture wounds to internal organs which may require surgery for repair.
  4. Significant bruising.
  5. Changes in sensation (loss of feeling or increased sensitivity) at the site of liposuction.
  6. Swelling which may persist for weeks or months after the procedure.
  7. Skin that loses its blood supply and subsequently dies and falls off.
  8. Burns that can occur from the ultrasonic probe (with Ultrasonic Liposuction).
  9. Toxicity from the anesthesia.
  10. Scarring at the incision site.
  11. Bumpy or wavy appearance throughout the liposuction area.

How can I find the most qualified surgeon to perform my procedure?

Questions About Lipo: Answer #5

In the United States, the Food and Drug Administration regulates the sale of medical devices and drugs that physicians used to perform liposuction.

However, it does not regulate who can perform liposuction procedures.

Basically any licensed physician may perform liposuction – whether they've had any surgical experience or not. So it is perfectly legal for your family physician – who has had no formal surgical training or experience beyond what few weeks are required in medical school – can perform surgery on you…

Probably not a great idea.

A good place to start looking is the American Board of Plastic Surgery or the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. These surgeons are extensively trained and are a very good bet when it comes to the experience and skill-level that you are looking for to handle your care.

In the case of the American Board of Plastic Surgery – surgeons claiming to be "board certified" in plastic surgery in the United States would have received (11):

  1. Four years of medical school education.
  2. One year of residency.
  3. Four or five years of general surgery residency.
  4. Two more years of plastic surgery training.
  5. After that, they need to take both written and oral examinations.
  6. Recommendation from the American Board of Plastic Surgery.

That is no small requirement just for the privilege of claiming to be "board certified" in plastic surgery. This is the kind of experience you want when choosing your surgeon.

In all fairness there are doctors who are not "board certified" in plastic surgery – but they successfully and carefully perform many liposuctions each and every year, and have many satisfied patients.

I think the key to choosing the best liposuction doctor is to make sure they have verifiable credentials, and they perform many successful procedures of the type you are wanting. You should be able to verify everything – and the doctor should accommodate your desire to know about his or her track-record.

Any doctor who does not comfortably accommodate your need-to-know – is definitely not the one for you (both interpersonally or professionally).

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You HAVE to Watch This:

Part 1: British journalist documents his liposuction journey in sunny California..

Questions About Lipo References:

  • "Liposuction: Adult Health Advisory." Lee A. Mancini. Clinical Reference Systems. Nov 2008 v2008 i3 pNA.

  • "The Skinny on Liposuction." USA Food and Drug Administration - Consumer Halth Information. (From Web January 20, 2010) http://www.fda.gov/consumer/updates/liposuction082007.html

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Letty's Liposuction Directory

Hello. Welcome to Letty's Liposuction Directory...

By the way, I am Letty - your personal guide to everything you ever wanted to know about liposuction.

I may not be a medical expert, but I too considered having liposuction. AND I absolutely promise to give you the "Real Deal" - all the information just as I've discovered it. The good.. the bad.. and the ugly.

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