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Liposuction can be an excellent choice for men and women who would like to contour areas of the body that are resistant to diet and exercise. Dr. Otto J. Placik is a body contouring specialist who frequently performs liposuction for patients throughout the Chicago and Arlington Heights areas. Here, you can find Dr. Placik’s responses to some of the most frequently asked questions about liposuction. If you have a question or concern that is not addressed below, we welcome you to contact us at your convenience.  

Liposuction FAQ

What Is Liposuction?

Liposuction is a popular body contouring procedure that smoothes and reshapes the body by removing stubborn fatty deposits. Depending on the patient, excess fat is loosened by either tumescent liposuction or ultrasonic-assisted lipoplasty. Once loosened, the excess tissue is removed using a vacuum that is attached to the cannula. Smaller treatment areas, such as the neck or face, may only require a syringe to remove fat.

What Types of Liposuction Are Available?

Traditionally, tumescent liposuction is the most commonly performed procedure for fat removal. With this method, a special saline solution is injected into the treatment area. The solution includes both a local anesthetic for patient comfort and medication that works to minimize bleeding and breaks down the fatty tissue for easy removal.

Power-assisted liposuction, or PAL, is the same as standard tumescent liposuction, with just one small addition: The tip of the cannula is motorized, helping to loosen the targeted tissue, which is then removed with suction. This is often a preferred rapid method for harvesting the fat used in fat transfer breast augmentation.

Ultrasonic-assisted lipoplasty (UAL), also known as VASERlipo® or Lysonix®, uses sound waves to liquefy fatty deposits for easy evacuation. This method is often preferred when targeting fat that is located in dense tissue regions of the body, such as the male pectoral region or female bra strap area.

Can I Combine Liposuction with a Tummy Tuck?

Absolutely. A tummy tuck, or abdominoplasty, is routinely performed along with liposuction. When combined with a tummy tuck, likely areas for liposuction include the hips and the flank, the area commonly referred to as “love handles.” The two procedures complement one another quite well and can result in sleeker body contouring.

What Happens During My Procedure?

Dr. Placik will make a small incision in the treatment area and insert a thin hollow tube, known as a cannula. Either general or local anesthesia will be administered according to the size of your treatment area and Dr. Placik’s recommendation. Based on the type of liposuction you receive, the unwanted fatty tissue, once loosened, is removed through a syringe or via a small vacuum. Though the procedure varies depending on the region of the body targeted, liposuction is typically performed as an outpatient procedure, allowing you to return home the same day.

What Can I Expect During Recovery?

After your treatment, you may experience some swelling, soreness or mild bruising. Dr. Placik will recommend that you wear a compression garment for 1 to 2 weeks post procedure, which should help ease any discomfort that you may feel. The garment should also minimize swelling and increase the rate of healing. While the majority of patients can return to work after a week, it is important to avoid any strenuous activity for 4 to 6 weeks, including exercise or heavy lifting. You can typically begin to ease back into your workout routine within several weeks. Dr. Placik will provide you with detailed post-procedure care instructions.

How Long Will My Results Last?

Liposuction permanently removes fat from targeted areas for smooth contours and a dramatic outcome. If you maintain your ideal weight through a healthy lifestyle, you can expect long-lasting results. Weight gain, however, can create new fat deposits that may compromise your new look.