A procedure introduced in the United States in 1982, liposuction can remove localized collections of fatty tissue in several areas of the body. By using a high vacuum device, the surgeon can suction fat from the legs, buttocks, abdomen, back, arms, face and neck. The increasing popularity of liposuction is due to the effectiveness of the technique (in the hands of a qualified surgeon) and the fact that it leaves only tiny scars, often as short as one-half inch in length or less.
Liposuction is neither a substitute for proper diet and exercise nor a cure for obesity. To get the most from this procedure, you should be of average weight with extra fat localized in specific areas. It is also important that you have healthy, elastic skin with the capacity to shrink evenly after surgery. Since liposuction removes only fat, it cannot eliminate dimpling or correct skin laxity. The tumescent technique, superficial liposculpture and other variations of conventional liposuction may be recommended by your surgeon, depending on your specific needs and the surgeon's preferred methods of treatment. If your skin has lost much of its elasticity, your plastic surgeon may recommend a skin tightening procedure (thigh lift, buttock lift or arm lift). These procedures are effective but leave more extensive scars.