When it comes to shedding that obstinate midlife weight gain, you won't be the only woman who's wondered about liposuction. Here, we look at how it works, what it costs, the recovery procedure and the risks. Once you have the facts, you can make an informed decision on whether a liposuction procedure is an option for you.
What is stomach liposuction?
Once past puberty, your body no longer creates new fat cells - so when you gain weight in adulthood, your existing fat cells get bigger...and bigger.
The best approach to menopausal weight gain is adopting a healthy menopause diet and using a mixture of aerobic exercise and strength training exercises. Alongside these healthy strategies, you can work at reducing stress and improving your self-esteem and body image.
But sometimes there are pockets of fat that simply won't shift, and liposuction could be an option for removing these. The effects of liposuction are permanent, but although it can improve the shape of your body, it can't stop you gaining weight again the future. Remember, this invasive procedure is not an alternative to a healthy lifestyle. You'll still need to eat sensibly and stay active into the future so as to stop fresh fat deposits appearing on your body. Nor is stomach liposuction considered a suitable treatment for cellulite.
Liposuction - or lipoplasty, liposculpture or suction-assisted lipectomy - redefines the shape of your body by sucking out excess fat from under your skin. If you have a lot of loose skin around your belly, you could combine liposuction with a tummy tuck.
The procedure is generally performed under a general anaesthetic, which means you'll be asleep.
The surgeon makes a small cut in the skin, slides a fine tube called a canula under the skin and then attaches a powerful vacuum pump to suck out fat carefully so the nearby blood vessels and nerves aren't damaged. After liposuction, skin retracts naturally leaving the body looking thinner and more sculpted.
Variations on the basic procedure include wet or tumescent liposuction, where the surgeon injects solutions of saline and anaesthetic under the skin to assist the procedure. This makes it easier to suck out the fat and reduces blood loss and bruising.
Another variation is Ultrasonic Assisted Liposuction (UAL), which uses ultrasonic vibrations transmitted either from above the skin, or through a tube inserted under the skin. The ultrasound energy breaks up the fat and makes it easier to remove. The procedure takes longer than ordinary liposuction.
If a relatively small amount of fat is being treated, it may be possible to use a syringe rather than a pump.
Which Patients are Best suited for Stomach Liposuction?Liposuction works best on people whose skin is firm and elastic and whose fat that has accumulated in easily definable areas of their body. Older people can have the procedure, but the stretchier your skin, the better the end result.
Stomach liposuction isn't suitable for obese people, who want to lose large amounts of weight, as surgeons prefer not to suction more than 3 litres (6 pints) of fat from the body at any one time.
It takes nerve and resilience to undergo this invasive treatment, so don't even consider it if you are under a lot of stress in other areas of your life.
It's vital to do your homework and ask questions so that your expectations of what liposuction might achieve for you are reasonable and realistic.
How Much Does Liposuction Cost?
Costs vary according to where you have the treatment, and the size of the area that's treated. You can get an idea here, of how much liposuction costs.
Liposuction Recovery TimeThe amount of time it takes for liposuction recovery depends on each individual person, and also varies according to the amount of fat you've had removed.
Dangers of Liposuction
As with every surgical procedure, there are certain dangers of liposuction. You should wise up on the risks attached to this procedure and take advice regarding the level of risk to yourself if you undergo this procedure. Liposuction is not suitable or advisable for everyone, so make sure you take professional advice before proceeding.
Please see also our section on gastric bypass surgery. We hope this information helps you to understand the stomach liposuction procedure better. Please remember that this site does not offer medical advice and any decision to undertake liposuction is your responsibility alone.
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