Brittany, a 36-year-old mother of two and a resident of Charleston, underwent a Mommy Makeover at Crantford | Costa Plastic Surgery to regain her confidence and physical appearance. This is her story.

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LIPOSUCTION

Unwanted pockets of fat can do severe damage to our body’s contours and the confidence we have about our physical appearance. Regardless of what causes them, most people have difficulty creating their “perfect” physique.

Unfortunately, this is mostly due to the stubborn nature of fat cells. They are often resistant to typical fat loss approaches and leave many people feeling helpless. Sometimes, we all can use a little help to achieve our aesthetic goals.

This is where liposuction comes in. It is fully capable of creating a dramatic improvement to your body shape without the need for hyper-invasive surgery or large incisions. When in the hands of the professionals at Crantford Costa Plastic Surgery, the results can be absolutely stunning. 

What Is Liposuction?

Liposuction is a minimally invasive aesthetic surgery that helps improve the contours of our bodies by removing excess pockets of stubborn fat. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, more than 211,000 liposuctions were performed throughout 2020, making it one of the most popular treatments available on the market.

Its popularity derives from the impactful results it provides and the reliability of the technique itself. During the surgery, a small cannula is inserted into the skin. It uses suction and other methods to loosen and remove the fat directly from the body. It is a well-perfected procedure and easy to understand — two factors that make people very comfortable when having it performed.    

Why Do We Need Liposuction?

When we are trying to lose weight and get rid of unflattering fat on our bodies, our go-to approach as a society is diet and exercise. While these can be very effective for some people, not everyone can achieve the desired results with those strategies alone. Sometimes, stubborn areas are resistant to fat loss. 

Unfortunately, there are very few options available on the market when it comes to fat reduction. Some noninvasive procedures can make subtle changes, but we find that many of our patients usually need a level of correction that can only be achieved through liposuction. We need this treatment because everyone deserves to have a figure that makes them feel happy and confident in their skin — and not everyone can achieve it without a bit of help. 

What Does Liposuction Treat?

Liposuction has one use: remove fat from unwanted areas. While it is pretty limited in its purpose, it can be used in a wide variety of locations around the body, such as:

Am I a Candidate for Liposuction?

If you are looking to have unwanted fat removed from your body, the odds of being a good candidate are in your favor. With that being said, there are a few factors that need to be considered to ensure that you are not taking unnecessary risks. 

Healthy Weight 

To begin, liposuction is only really commended for individuals who are within 30% of their ideal body weight. Liposuction is not an alternative to major weight loss, so you should wait until you are close to your goal before having liposuction performed. This will ensure that the areas of fat you are targeting wouldn’t simply reduce naturally. 

Skin Elasticity

Skin elasticity is another critical factor to consider. When you remove fat, the skin that was accommodating the extra fat remains. If you do not have good elasticity, it is possible to experience skin sagging after liposuction. This may be remedied in extreme cases with surgery, but it needs to be considered before undergoing the procedure. 

Realistic Expectations

The third major factor is to ensure that you have realistic expectations about what the procedure can actually achieve. Liposuction is a highly effective treatment with an astounding success rate, so one of the only ways you can become disappointed by the results is if you expected liposuction to achieve feats it wasn’t designed for. Reviewing before and after photos and doing plenty of research beforehand will help prevent you from feeling uneasy about an otherwise successful liposuction treatment. 

Preexisting Conditions

Lastly, preexisting conditions can disqualify you if the risk is too high. Smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, drug use and other lifestyle factors can be classified as preexisting conditions that can prevent you from being determined as a healthy candidate. 

How Should I Prepare for Liposuction?

Liposuction is a minimally invasive surgery, so there is some preparation you will need to make to ensure you are healthy enough to undergo this procedure. The first step in that process is undergoing a consultation with our medical professionals. This is often followed by lab testing and other measures when necessary. 

If any medication you are taking may become problematic for your procedure, it may need to be adjusted or stopped for a temporary period. We will work with you and your primary physician to determine the best route for this process. 

You must immediately stop smoking — this habit has proven to significantly increase surgical risk, minimize potential results and damage the healing process. These can all lead to dire consequences, so you should take this advice very seriously. 

Recovery Station

We recommend that all of our patients create a recovery station in their homes before having the surgery performed. This can include creating a comfortable place to rest and sleep during the recovery, making sure all necessities are within arms reach and having all medications and instructions handy. 

Surgery Day

It is required that you have someone with you who can drive you home from the hospital since you will not be allowed to operate machinery. If they can stick around to help out with food or other tasks, that is also very helpful as well. Find a trusted friend or loved one who can help you through those initial stages of recovery. 

What Should I Expect from a Liposuction Procedure?

There are four main steps to a liposuction procedure: anesthesia, incision, fat removal and recovery.

Anesthesia

You will be given either local anesthesia, intravenous sedation or general anesthesia during your surgery. This ensures you are comfortable during your procedure and that your body is relaxed for the surgery. You will work with your surgeon ahead of time to determine which option is the best fit for you.

Incisions

Liposuction requires small incisions to be made near the treatment area. Once the incision is made, a solution is applied to reduce bleeding as the procedure is performed. The incisions are always made as inconspicuously as possible, usually within a natural fold on the body or within the bikini line. The incisions are so small that the scarring is virtually invisible once it has had time to heal. 

Fat Removal

A small cannula with a hollow tube is inserted into the incision. At this point, a chemical solution or concentrated light may be used to help liquify surrounding fat and better contour the surrounding area. These methods help provide more drastic results and reduce the time needed to achieve results by making the suction process much more efficient.

Beginning Recovery

After the suction is complete, the incisions will be closed with sutures or surgical bandaging. The local anesthetic will help alleviate some of the pain and discomfort that can occur from surgery — many patients hardly experience any immediate or discomfort. You may be kept in the recovery room until you have been cleared to leave. 

What Should I Expect During Liposuction Recovery?

In the first stages of your recovery, compression garments will likely be applied to help reduce potential swelling and compact your skin to your new contours. In some cases, small drains may also be placed to help alleviate fluid buildup. Your surgeon will provide you with a list of post-operative instructions to follow to ensure your recovery is safe and your results are maximized. 

Many patients can cope with minor pain or discomfort with over-the-counter medications, but you may be provided with prescription medication when appropriate. It is normal to develop bruising and discoloration at the incision sites and around the treatment areas since a moderate amount of pressure is needed to achieve results. 

We will help you set up your follow-up appointments and give you an activity to plan immediately following your treatment. We recommend that patients walk a bit to promote blood flow and healing, but you should refrain from any strenuous activities until cleared by your physician. Most patients need four to eight weeks for all side effects to resolve, but the majority of them will only last three or four weeks. 

Questions You Should Ask Your Surgeon

Where is the procedure happening?
What medication options do I have?
What bandaging will be provided?
How should I use the compression garments?
When can I return to work?
When can I return to exercising?
How often are follow-up appointments?

These are just some examples, but we recommend keeping a note of every question you have during the process so that you can ask during your consultation or before the surgery. You will feel much more confident when you are fully informed. 

What Kind of Results Can I Expect from Liposuction?

If you can maintain your healthy lifestyle and weight, the results of liposuction can be permanent. When you remove fat cells from the body, you cannot produce more, so the amount of fat carried in a specific area is drastically reduced. However, if you experience weight gain, you will not hold it in different locations throughout your body. 

You should be informed that liposuction cannot address sagging skin — only tummy tucks or other excisions can deal with that issue. It also does nothing for muscle tone other than revealing the already existing muscle hiding beneath the fat deposits. 

Since the incisions are made strategically, many patients report having no negative impacts from the incisions that are made for the surgery. After a few years, they simply blend into the skin and disappear entirely. 

Can I Combine My Liposuction with Other Procedures?

As a minimally invasive surgery, liposuction can be combined with plenty of other procedures to amplify the amount of correction being made. Here are some of the most common combinations:

Breast Augmentation
Breast Reduction
Brazilian Butt Lift
Tummy Tuck
Mommy Makeover

How Much Does Liposuction Cost?

Depending on your geographical location and the amount of correction you have done, liposuction can cost anywhere between $2,000 and $7,000. While this is only an estimate with an extensive range, an exact amount can be provided to you during your consultation once your surgeon has had a chance to review your condition and aesthetic goals. 

We highly recommend avoiding any practice that claims to offer professional-level results at a fraction of the cost. Your estimate includes your surgeon’s training, expertise and experience, and the last thing you want to do is find out that the lower price tag of your liposuction came with lower-tier results. 

Why Choose Crantford Costa Plastic Surgery?

When it comes to experience and expertise, the staff at our office is second to none. We have a plethora of training in cutting-edge treatments and years of experience under our belts. All of our surgeons are board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgeons and continuously undergo intensive training year-round to bring the best practices directly to our patients. We focus on our patients’ happiness, and it has garnered us a reputation that spreads far throughout the plastic surgery community.   

Improve Your Contours with Liposuction in Charleston, SC

If you are ready to learn more about how liposuction can help improve your contours and confidence, give our office a call at (843) 722-5904. You can also fill out our convenient online contact form if you are in a rush and need a call back at a better time. Our staff is looking forward to working with you and being your partner through your aesthetic journey. 

Schedule A Consultation

If you have questions, comments or would like to schedule a consultation, please fill out a form on our contact page. If needed, an office representative will contact you as soon as possible. We are looking forward to hearing from you.

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