Most men and women would like to have a firmer, more toned abdomen or stomach. But despite diet and exercise, many people still cannot seem to lose the fat deposits in this area. For this reason, abdominal liposculpture has become a popular cosmetic treatment for getting rid of unwanted fat around the stomach and waistline.
In liposuction, fat cells are permanently removed from the abdomen, creating a slimmer profile that could not be achieved by diet and exercise alone. The newer methods are often distinguished by the term “liposculpture” because the doctor is able to get a smoother, more sculpted result. Tumescent liposculpture is one of the latest techniques that results in less swelling, bruising and results in a quicker recovery than traditional liposuction. Most importantly, a local anesthetic is used eliminating many of the complications of general anesthesia.
Who Should Get Abdominal Liposculpture?
Abdominal liposculpture is not for everyone. It is not a treatment for obesity. The ideal candidate for this procedure is a person who is in good health, exercises regularly, maintains good eating habits and is at or near his or her ideal body weight. Some factors that affect the success of abdominal liposculpture include age, prior pregnancies and location and amount of abdominal fat deposits. Abdominal liposculpture can be done at any age as long as the skin has enough elasticity to achieve a sculptured appearance after the fat is removed. Where the skin is less elastic as in some older patients, liposculpture can be combined with another corrective cosmetic procedure like skin tightening.
A previous pregnancy may stretch the abdominal muscles and cause an unattractive bulge. The remedy in the past was to resort to a tummy tuck or abdominoplasty. However, with new techniques in liposculpture, most women get satisfactory results without resorting to surgery. A cesarean or C-section may also cause a bulge above the scar which cannot be eliminated through exercise. Abdominal liposculpture can successfully remedy this condition with excellent results.
Multiple Levels of Fat in the Abdomen
There are two levels of fat in the abdomen: subcutaneous fat (beneath the skin) and deep fat located in the abdomen around the intestines and other organs. Liposuction is effective in removing subcutaneous fat. Because of the depth and proximity to organs, internal body fat cannot be removed by liposuction. Fortunately, in most cases the majority of fat from overweight is subcutaneous fat which can be safely removed through liposuction.
Traditional abdominal liposuction requires general anesthesia. The patient is administered anesthesia and the doctor uses thin straw-like instruments called cannulas which are inserted into the fat deposits which are then suctioned out through a tube. The doctor uses sutures or stitches to close the incisions therefore some bleeding will occur. Some patients may even require blood transfusions. There is also usually swelling and bruising in the treated area.
Ab Liposculpture Risks
Risks associated with traditional liposuction are possible infection at the incision or entry point, excessive bleeding, bruising and risks associated with general anesthesia. A newer technique called “tumescent liposculpture” gives more attractive results with fewer risks than traditional liposuction. Tumescent liposculpture gives the doctor more freedom to remove fat cells while sculpting the area to get a more attractive outcome.
The term tumescent means “swelling” because the doctor injects the area to be treated with a solution which swells the fat cells to be removed. Because the fat cells are more visible, removal is easier. The instruments used in this procedure are smaller (“microcannulas“) than those in traditional liposuction. This method takes longer because the instruments are smaller but the results are usually smoother. Also because the incision is smaller, no sutures are needed. The open incisions allow the injected fluid to drain. When sutures are closed, the fluid is trapped causing prolonged swelling of the area.
Patients Are Usually Awake During the Liposculpture Procedure
One of the biggest differences is that liposculpture does not require general anesthesia. The surgeon injects a large volume of a special solution prior to the procedure. This swells the area allowing easier access to the fat cells. The solution contains a local anesthetic to numb the area, and medication to control inflammation. Adrenaline is also injected to constrict the blood vessels so bleeding is minimized. The injected fluid is absorbed into the body or excreted in the urine. A small amount is sucked out with the fat or drained through the incisions.
The patient is awake during the entire procedure. The doctor can communicate with the patient and the patient is able to change positions if necessary. The problems associated with anesthesia are eliminated. Recovery time is quicker because the procedure is less invasive and the instruments smaller so bruising is also reduced. Result are visible much sooner because there is less swelling therefore the patient is better able to see the final results.
Recovering from Abs Liposculpture
For 6 to 18 hours after the surgery most patients who undergo the tumescent method experience little pain or discomfort This is because traces of the anesthetic are still present in the system therefore reducing pain. After this period, some patients experience muscle soreness or slight aching. This can be relieved with over the counter pain medication.
The incisions in this method are left open so there will be drainage of the anesthetic fluid for 2-3 days after the procedure. This drainage accelerates healing while reducing post-operative swelling. The doctor covers the area with absorbent pads and secures the area with a pressure garment. Over the next several days there will be some swelling which should decrease gradually over the next 4 to 12 weeks. A certain degree of firmness and lumpiness of the skin is normal during the healing process. This gradually decreases over a period of 2 to 6 months after the surgery.
How Long for Abdominal Area to Recover?
Most patients report seeing improvement as soon as one week after surgery. However, for most people the final result will not be apparent for 3 to 6 months. Abdominal liposculpture, whether traditional or tumescent, can be the answer to stubborn or resistant fat deposits in the stomach area. Once you have completed your research on the best doctor and facility for your finances, you may be on your way to a sleeker, more attractive profile.