Liposuction is a semi-surgical technique that improves the body’s contour by removing excess fat deposits located between the skin and muscle.
Liposuction involves the use of a small stainless steel tube, called a cannula (from the Latin word for reed, tube, cane). The liposuction cannula has a number of holes at its tip and is connected to a gentle suction pump. The cannula is inserted into the fat through tiny incisions in the skin, and the fat is suctioned out as the cannula is moved back and forth gently through fat.
During the healing process after liposuction, the tiny skin incisions close without needing sutures and are almost invisible after a few months. Once the fat has been removed, the skin begins to shrink immediately and continues to retract over the next few months, resulting in a natural looking, improved body contour.
Liposuction can be performed in a number of ways. Originally, it was performed in a hospital using general anaesthetic and large cannulas, without a wetting agent. It was a dangerous procedure and required blood transfusions. The introduction of a wetting agent (tumescent) and finer cannulas by Dermatologist Jeffrey Klein made the procedure much safer because it virtually stopped blood loss, reduced infection and allowed liposuction to be performed in the Doctors rooms under local Anaesthetic alone. The introduction of large volumes of dilute local anaesthetic (tumescent technique) before commencing suctioning allowed the techniques of bodysculpting by liposculpture to develop.
The introduction of power cannulas, laser lipo, and ultrasound assisted liposuction have added very little if at all to the safety and effectiveness of liposuction under local anaesthetic. In fact they may even be responsible for some unwanted side effects associated with liposuction.
Dr Goldbaum believes that there should be only 3 components in liposuction and liposculpture; they are
- the Patient
- the Doctor
- the Cannula.
The injection of dilute local anesthetic into the targeted fat allows for easier extraction and limits blood loss. It also allows the procedure to be performed as a day procedure with only minimal time off work required ( 1-3 days). Best of all as Dr Goldbaum states, the procedure is extremely safe and allows me the ability to remove more fat as the patient can move into several positions including sitting and standing. This 3-D sculpting ensures the best possible results.
The Tumescent Technique
At Liposuction Australia, we use the ‘tumescent technique’ which offers advantages over traditional liposuction techniques. With smoother results, fewer complications and faster recovery, tumescent liposuction may be the reason liposuction has become one of the most popular procedures of choice.
Benefits of Tumescent Liposuction
Tumescent liposuction provides several advantages over the original liposuction:
- Using local anaesthesia instead of general anaesthesia eliminates general anaesthesia-related side effects.
- The procedure can be performed outside the hospital setting.
- The short term recovery is shorter.
- Patients are up and about immediately after the procedure and are encouraged to walk the next day.
- There is minimal blood and fluid loss.
- Use of antibacterial lidocaine may reduce the chance of infection.
- Intravenous fluid replacement is not necessary.
- Body contouring and 3-D sculpting is now possible as the patient is able to turn, sit and stand during the procedure.
- Smaller incisions result in less scarring.
- The use of smaller cannulae allows for a smoother cosmetic result.