The rise of plastic surgery has drastically changed the way the world looks at its standards of beauty. While what is considered to be “socially acceptable” continues to evolve and change, more and more people are now able to enhance their appearance and silhouettes through the means of cosmetic procedures. In fact, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) reveals there were “15.9 million surgical and minimally-invasive cosmetic procedures performed in the United States in 2015.”
A large portion of this figure (14.2 million, to be exact) amounts for cosmetic minimally-invasive procedures. These procedures echo society’s obsession with defying age, as majority of them had to do with combating aging. The top five procedures in this category are Botox, soft tissue fillers, chemical peels, laser hair removals, and microdermabrasion.
On the other hand, the remaining 1.7 million amounts for cosmetic surgical procedures people chose. These procedures signify their decision to enhance their physical appearances. The top five procedures in this category are breast augmentation, liposuction, nose reshaping, eyelid surgery, and tummy tuck.
Effective Ways to Eliminate Fat
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stating that more than 36% of adults in the U.S. are obese, it goes to follow that many are becoming health conscious and are trying to cut down their weight. This goes hand-in-hand with the many diet and fitness fads that are populating the country today. There are numerous miracle juices, diets, detox plans, and other gimmicks that all promise to quickly eliminate fat and to help people lose weight.
Some people rely on good old fashioned dieting, exercising, and hard work to minimize their body fat index. For this people, their toned bodies are the result of countless hours of exercising and depriving themselves of their favorite food. Yet for many of them, their best efforts are in vain, as there are problem areas that no matter how hard they try to lose weight, the fat just wouldn’t budge off.
For this reason, going under the knife became a popular option for those who want to lose stubborn fat.
Liposuction and Liposculpture
Liposuction was performed 222,051 times in 2015, a figure that is 5 percent higher than the 2014 statistic. It is defined by Medical News Today as “a type of cosmetic surgery that breaks up and ‘sucks’ fat from the body.” It is often used on areas such as the abdomen, buttocks, chin, arms, thighs, calves, and back.
Before expounding further, it is worth pointing out that “liposuction” and “liposculpture” are two terms that are oftentimes used interchangeably in the medical community. While they are relatively the same thing, the difference boils down to the amount of fat that is to be removed from the area.
Liposuction is used by those who want to remove a significant amount of fat on “big areas,” such as those who want to trim their love handles or beer bellies. By using liposuction, large pockets of fat would be removed from the body, which would give patients better contours. This means that more fat is removed, and the general bulk of the problem area is reduced.
On the other hand, liposculpting is performed when the contour is already in place but the patient wants to further define the area. For example, an athlete can undergo liposculpting to target his rectus abdominis muscle and to have washboard abs. To give the patient flawless abs, the surgeon would then carve out or sculpt the existing muscle to give it further definition and shape. Less fat is removed, but the remaining fat is shaped so that it mimics the underlying muscles, creating a more toned appearance.
These two procedures can also go hand-in-hand. Sometimes, patients would undergo liposuction to contour the area. Afterwards, it would be sculpted further for more definition. Others would even combine other body contouring procedures; for example, breast augmentation and breast lift are popular, as well as liposuction and a tummy tuck. This combination of procedures would help patients get the body they desire in a more efficient manner.
How they are performed
In liposuction, a hollow instrument called a cannula is inserted under the skin. A high-pressure vacuum is attached to the cannula which enables it to suction off fat deposits under the skin. In laser liposuction or liposculpture, more specialized instruments are used to effectively contour the areas. In one technique, there is a specialized laser in the cannula that effectively melts off the fat in the problem areas. The fat is then gently suctioned off or is drained from the body using small incisions.
Depending on the targeted area, the patient can undergo the procedure with general or local anesthesia. Patients who had general anesthesia are often required to stay overnight at the clinics, while patients who had localized anesthesia are discharged faster.
On Losing Weight
Both liposuction and liposculpture are meant to treat obesity or for weight loss purposes. Also, there are cases wherein liposuction is used to help a person with health issues, the majority of the performed procedures are purely cosmetic. This means that the procedure is performed with maximal aesthetic results as the end goal; that is, achieving the patient’s desired results. The amount of fat being taken out of the body is not the priority, but the appearance is.
When the fat cells are removed from the body, they typically do not come back. However, if the patient does not take care to maintain his weight, then the remaining fat cells can increase. The end result would be that they would once again incur mass, but this time the shape of their body would be different.
Despite their efficacy, however, not everyone is a good candidate for liposuction or liposculpture. People who have tight, elastic skin are good candidates, while those who have blood flow problems and compromised immune systems are cautioned against the procedures.
If you are dedicated to losing weight in problem areas, then these surgical cosmetic procedures may be ideal for you. Talk to your doctor about your options and see which treatment would give you your desired results.