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Liposuction: Separating Fact From Fiction

When something gets popular enough, there are bound to be rumors. Rumors will turn into myths. And eventually, it can practically be guaranteed that plenty of folks will actively believe in something that just isn’t true. That general rule of thumb is why those celebrity “news” magazines exist in every grocery store checkout line. Perhaps it’s debatable whether or not liposuction has reached the same level of notoriety as Jennifer Aniston’s love-life, but it’s definitely popular, as over 400,000 procedures are done in the U.S. every year. So, just like there are undoubtedly plenty of myths many people believe about Aniston, there are some general beliefs when it comes to liposuction that are simply false.

A round of liposuction fact or fiction:

Liposuction is for women only -- Fiction

Whatever the reason may be for the assumption, it certainly exists. Liposuction is for women. Perhaps it’s one of the many things that can be filed under the macho category for men, as in, “we are too macho to consider something like liposuction.” If that preconceived notion exists in your mind, just know that it’s incorrect. Liposuction is an equal opportunity procedure when it comes to the sexes. The main purpose of liposuction (to reshape one or more areas of your body) holds true for men and women both. Of course, there are some general differences in the areas men and women tend to target with liposuction. Women often use liposuction to reshape areas like the outer thigh and hips, while men go after the waist and back.

Liposuction is a treatment for obesity -- Fiction

It isn’t accurate to look at liposuction as a fat-loss technique. In fact, most cosmetic surgeons prefer that their patients getting liposuction are already at a stable body weight. Instead, liposuction should be looked at as more of a finishing tool. Undesirable fatty deposits have an annoying habit of sticking around even after someone has committed to regular exercise and a healthy diet.

It is for situations like those that liposuction is the most useful. It isn’t so much about losing weight as it is about losing the excess fat in areas of the body where exercise and diet don’t seem to be doing the trick. Liposuction does not remove cellulite, dimples or stretch marks. What it does do is allow the patient to change and enhance the contours of her body.

The removed fat doesn’t come back -- Fact

However, the “fact” comes with a rather large asterisk. Technically, there is no doubt about what liposuction does. During the procedure, your GLOW Surgical Arts cosmetic surgeon permanently removes fat cells from whichever area of the body you’re targeting. Those removed fat cells are gone forever. Where the asterisk comes in is here: it’s up to you to maintain a healthy weight after the procedure. Again, as discussed above, liposuction is not a treatment for obesity. You should absolutely not be thinking of the procedure as a way to accomplish any sort of weight loss. If you gain significant weight after liposuction, your body will be forced to store the new fat somewhere else in your body. It won’t return to the area where the cells were removed. That might sound good at first blush, but that isn’t necessarily the case. New fat can grow deeper inside your body, which can be more unhealthy and potentially harmful than the fat that is stored near the surface -- where liposuction typically removes the fat cells. Maintaining a healthy body weight after a liposuction procedure is crucial.

After liposuction, the skin becomes saggy -- Fiction

It’s important to understand that liposuction is a medical procedure. Just because there’s no “going under the knife” doesn’t mean it’s risk-free. Like with any other procedure, risks exist. Among those risks, it is possible that loose, extra skin will appear baggy after the fat cells are removed via the liposuction. Usually, the skin around the area which received liposuction will tighten after a few months and using techniques such as laser lipolysis or Smartlipo as we do at GLOW enhances this process. If that doesn’t happen, though, there are several ways to deal with the saggy skin that remains. Overall, the idea that liposuction will result in saggy skin is false. Possible, yes. Likely, no.

None of this is to suggest you should feel one way or the other about liposuction and whether or not it’s a fit for you. The list of things to consider is long, and personal. However, if you find yourself curious about the option, don’t necessarily believe everything you hear. We can’t help you with the Jennifer Aniston rumors, but we can definitely help you determine whether or not liposuction might make sense for you. Consultations with our GLOW cosmetic surgeons are free and come with no obligation -- and you can schedule one today by clicking here or calling (650) 241-2209.

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