Expert Plastic Surgeon Offers Advice On Liposuction

 
 

Liposuction is so common these days that you don’t even have to say the whole word to know what someone means. All you need to say is “lipo”.

But just because the procedure is performed hundreds of thousands of times each year doesn’t mean it’s simple. In fact, liposuction is major surgery that should be performed by an accomplished plastic surgeon—like Dr. David Rapaport, whose thriving New York City practice treats thousands of lipo patients year in and year out. 

We recently sat with Dr. Rapaport to gain a fuller understanding of the procedure, what makes a qualified candidate, and the all-important process of selecting the right doctor.

“In the most basic sense, liposuction is a surgical procedure that removes excess fat deposits,” Dr. Rapaport explains. “In the hands of a skilled surgeon, however, it is the gold standard method to improve body contour in areas affected by excess fatty deposits.”

Dr. Rapaport explains the science behind the success. “Fat cells cannot migrate or multiply, so once they are removed from your body, they won’t come back. Therefore, any contour improvement achieved with liposuction is a permanent improvement that will persist, even if a patient gains weight.”

Women are the most frequent lipo recipients, but men can also benefit from the procedure. In women, liposuction is most commonly used to re-sculpt the waist, outer thighs, hips, abdomen, inner thighs, knees, arms, and calves. Men typically address their waist, lower abdomen, under the chin, and chest. 

 
 

“In the most basic sense, liposuction is a surgical procedure that removes excess fat deposits,” Dr. Rapaport explains. “In the hands of a skilled surgeon, however, it is the gold standard method to improve body contour in areas affected by excess fatty deposits.”

 
 

A new technology, called BodyTite, may be employed to provide additional tightening in lipo patients with reduced skin elasticity. “This technology delivers bipolar radiofrequency energy in a linear manner, thereby shortening connective tissue and tightening the overlying skin,” Dr. Rapaport explains. It doesn’t require bigger incisions or affect downtime. “I’ve seen impressive results from this process, and consider it the best technology we have, short of a tummy tuck.” he adds.

Still, not all people are good candidates for liposuction. Dr. Rapaport says one of the key questions to ask is, “Where is your fat and how does it look?” Generally speaking, fat that is soft and can be pinched will respond well to liposuction. Skin tone is also important. “People with very loose skin—typically, women after childbirth and anyone after massive weight loss—may not be well served by having liposuction,” he explains. “Removing the fat in this context can actually make loose skin look worse.”

Dr. Rapaport also makes it very clear that liposuction is not a weight-loss solution. “Someone who is generally overweight and is hoping liposuction will take the place of diet and exercise, will be disappointed.”

This insight reinforces the necessity to work with a skilled surgeon. Typically, a board-certified plastic surgeon is the best choice for superior results because of the rigorous education, training, and experience it takes to earn board certification.

With superior results in mind, Dr. Rapaport said he performs all liposuction using the tumescent technique, which is widely recognized as the finest method. This technique involves the injection of a dilute solution of lidocaine as a local anesthetic and epinephrine to control bleeding prior to the actual suctioning of the fatty tissue. The process effectively reduces blood loss, allows for increased fat removal, and improves sculpting capabilities.

Regarding recovery, Dr. Rapaport says the vast majority of patients having liposuction will be back at work in about four days, only wearing a compression garment during that time. “When liposuction is performed by a talented surgeon, recovery is usually very quick, most patients only need over-the-counter pain medication to manage post-operative soreness, and the results are beautiful.”

 

ABOUT THE EXPERT

David P. Rapaport, MD

Plastic Surgery
Face, Breast & Body Surgery, Hair Restoration

ParkAvenuePlasticSurgeon.com