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Areas of Liposuction

Liposuction can be performed on just about any area of the body today. With the use of new technologies permitting doctors to utilize cannulas of smaller and smaller diameters, even delicate areas of the body such as the face and neck can be targeted using liposuction.


If your inner knees are giving you fits, you'll need to see a plastic surgeon to evaluate whether liposuction is a viable method for fixing the problems. Many patients complain that they would like to have the "bump" or "bulge" on the inner knee removed, but liposuction may not always be able to help with this problem. If the bulge is due to a bony protrusion or excess skin, then liposuction won't be able to help. However, if the bulge is the result of excess fat, then liposuction can work wonders.

The front of the knee is another common area of concern. Unfortunately, this part of the knee can be more difficult to treat than the inner knee because the loose skin in the area complicates the procedure somewhat. However, an experienced plastic surgeon will be able to evaluate your personal situation and decide whether the anatomy of your knee is appropriate for the surgery. Skin at the front of the knee area can end up looking loose and sagging as a result of liposuction under certain conditions. A skilled physician will be able to determine whether treating the outer knee will be consistent with the patient's aesthetic goals.

Calves and Ankles

Calves and ankles can be successfully treated using liposuction. Using 2 to 4 small incisions on both sides of the leg, the somewhat fibrotic fat tissues can be suctioned out of the body. However, it's important to choose a skilled surgeon to perform liposuction on the calves and ankles. There is a slightly greater risk of irregularities such as dents and dimpling in this area because of the fibrotic nature of the fat tissues in the area. Also, calves and ankles are frequently exposed and can easily reveal any problems such as dimpling that are noticeable. By choosing a skilled physician, you'll guarantee better results on this hard-to-treat area of the body.

Compared to other areas of the body, the calves and ankles can require a more prolonged recovery period. Experts believe that the problem of gravity pulling blood down into the calves and ankles can lead to more swelling that lasts longer than in other body regions. Despite the potential negative effects of liposuction on the calves and ankles, the benefits are worthwhile for patients who qualify as good candidates for the procedure.

Upper Arms

The upper arms have been potentially difficult areas of the body to treat. Excess fat in the arms goes hand in hand with excess skin and patients receiving liposuction of the arms in the past were often forced to consider having excess skin excised, leaving a very large scar behind. Only females have liposuction of the upper arms and doctors today know that good skin contraction and postoperative appearance are best achieved by leaving behind some subdermal fat.

The biceps and the posterior compartment are frequently treated using liposuction. It may take up to six months to achieve the maximum outcome of contraction.

The type of skin that a patient has can play a role in the final outcome of upper arm treatments. Thicker skin is associated with excellent outcomes. Patients with thinner skin often need to have subdermal fat left in place to achieve more pleasing results. Older patients with skin that is wrinkled will often find that their skin will pull back into place, but in some cases the wrinkles actually become more noticeable. However, the wrinkles are often more aesthetically pleasing than having a long scar from the excision of excess skin. Patients need to be made of aware of the possibility of having wrinkled skin so that they can develop realistic expectations for the procedure.


Abdominal liposuction area

The stomach is one of the most popular areas targeted using liposuction. Often it is treated in conjunction with the hips and thighs to produce the most aesthetically pleasing contour. The stomach is particularly prone to large amounts of weight gain and change that is not characteristic of the other parts of the body. Liposuction is a procedure that is particularly suited to removing excess fat in the abdominal region quickly and easily to help patients get the body they truly desire.

Typically, one to two incisions are made in the bellybutton or within the pubic hair to target the upper and lower regions of the abdomen respectively. Incisions in the bellybutton are called umbilical incisions and incisions in the pubic hair are called pubic incisions. If other incisions are required, doctors will use an existing scar from an appendectomy or perhaps a Ceasarean section to gain access to other parts of the abdominal region.

Hips, and Thighs

Liposuction for hips and thighs

Using only one incision, the outer thighs and hips can be successfully targeted with liposuction. The same is true for the inner thighs. The half-inch incision itself is made underneath the buttocks in the crease such that it will be hidden from view. Some surgeons make several incisions around the leg in order to gain access to more fat from different angles.

The stomach, hips, and thighs can be treated together at the same time. Many doctors recommend this because it is possible to achieve a more contoured result if all areas are treated at the same time. Due to the nature of the subcutaneous tissue, skin type, and fat type in these areas, the outer thighs are perhaps the easiest to treat using liposuction with the inner thighs coming in at a close second. The fronts and backs of the thighs are next in line, along with the buttocks.

Anterior and Posterior Bra Region

The upper and lower back has become an increasingly popular area of the body to treat using liposuction. Clothing choices can impact the noticeability of fat stores in this area with certain types of clothing causing compression and a corresponding bulge to fat stores in this part of the body. "Bra bulge" or bra fat can be accentuated by wearing a bra. The good news is that the upper and lower back, including bra bulgerespond very well to liposuction treatments though there is a lot of dense, fibrotic tissue in the subcutaneous layers of the skin that can limit the results somewhat, unfortunately. Doctors may have to put incisions on the back in visible locations in order to reach the targeted fat stores on in each side of the body, but generally fat removal is easy in this part of the body and the results are striking.

Face and Neck

Face areas targeted by liposuction

The most common area in the face and neck treated by liposuction is under the chin (the "submental region"). This area may be treated using a liposuction as part of a facelift or as a stand-alone procedure. Liposuction may produce results comparable to a facelift but with less of a recovery period required. Indeed, liposuction under the chin may be recommended for patients who cannot have a facelift performed for some reason, offering outcomes that are very respectable in terms of their ability to turn back the clock.

The cheeks and jowls are often treated using liposuction, though procedures targeting these areas are slightly less popular than those targeting under the chin. The same submental incision can be used to treat these areas or the doctor may use incisions made inside the mouth in the cheeks instead.

The incisions used to do liposuction of the face and neck are small, usually within 1/8 to 1/2 of an inch. These are position in inconspicuous locations such as under the chin and slowly fade over time. When performed in conjunction with a facelift procedure, the incisions used for the facelift are also used for the liposuction treatment. Some patients opt to have the muscles under the chin tightened as well as a suture across the line of the neck to create more definition to the neck crease.

Liposuction Areas for Men

Liposuction in men differs from liposuction in women for a number of reasons. The distribution of fat in the body is different in men than in women and skin and subcutaneous tissue in men is considerably thicker than it is in women. As a result, following treatment, men may notice a considerable thickness of skin left in the treated area, which is different than how a similarly treated area on a woman would appear.

Though intrabdominal fat cannot be treated with liposuction, there are a variety of areas on the body that are popular target areas for men seeking liposuction. Male breasts, also known as gynecomastia, are commonly treated as well as the love handles and spare tire. Men with fat in deeper areas of the abdomen (intrabdominal fat) will need to use other weight loss methods including diet and exercise to lose weight around the visceral organs.

Male breast tissue is composed of both fat and breast tissue. To target these tissues, doctors usually try to hide incisions for liposuction of the male breasts within the armpit or around the nipple (areola). Additional incisions may need to be made as well, but the plastic surgeon will make every effort to hide them or disguise them on the man's body. Though the majority of male breasts can be treated using liposuction alone, but if a significant amount of excess skin remains or if there is a large amount of breast tissue, it may be necessary to make an incision to remove the breast tissue and the excess skin to achieve the desired results.

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