- Length: 2-4 hours (generally outpatient)
- Anesthesia: General or Local with Sedation
- Normal recovery: Return to work in 1 weeks, Resume light exercise after 4 weeks, Swelling resolves completely after 4-8 weeks
- Possible side effects: Swelling, Bruising, Pain or Discomfort
We Pacific North-Westerners pride ourselves on living healthy, active lifestyles, but sometimes diet and exercise alone are not enough to get rid of certain stubborn areas of fat. Liposuction can provide a safe and effective way to remove excess fat and to shape your body to achieve the fit, youthful look that patients desire.
Men and women of all ages and body types can benefit from this safe and proven procedure. Ideal candidates for liposuction have persistent areas of fat that do not respond to exercise, are in good health, and have realistic expectations about their results.
How does Liposuction Work?
Liposuction removes fat from under the skin using tubes (called cannulas) and gentle suction. Liposuction is not a weight-loss procedure. It is a body sculpting procedure and is intended to be a supplement to a healthy lifestyle. Dramatic changes in appearance are possible, but maintaining the results will require a healthy diet and exercise.
Liposuction can be performed under general anesthesia or under local anesthesia with “twilight sedation.” There may be some discomfort after the procedure, which varies depending on how extensive the procedure was, but pain can be managed with medication.
Liposuction can be effective on many different areas of the body, and common locations include:
- Hips and buttocks
- Abdomen and waist
- Upper arms
- Inner knee
- Chest area
- Cheeks, chin and neck
- Calves and ankles
Dr. Min’s Approach to Liposuction Surgery
Pregnancy, genetics, periods of inactivity and aging can create areas of fat that seem impossible to get rid of. Liposuction can restore a natural, youthful shape, and it can also make patients more comfortable and confident in their bodies. “Liposculpture” is actually a more accurate term for the procedure, as it involves an esthetic reshaping of the body area, not simply fat removal.
Dr. George Min is a board certified plastic surgeon with experience in the latest liposuction techniques and a reputation for delivering beautiful, balanced results. He takes a conservative approach that focuses on patient safety and a natural appearance. Dr. Min does not believe in cutting corners, and our state-of-the-art Bellevue facility is unlike any you will find in the Seattle or Bellevue area. Our on-site surgical suite is equipped with the latest technology and is one of only a handful of locations to meet the stringent new safety certification standards.
We pride ourselves in being the best, not only in surgery, but also in patient care and education.
Your Liposuction Options
Dr. min has experience with all of the four leading techniques for liposuction, and he matches patients to the techniques that best fit their bodies and their goals. All of the techniques involve the surgical suctioning of fat deposits from under the skin. The incisions are usually no bigger than a few millimeters and are made in discrete areas of the body to reduce visible scarring.
Liposuction can be performed on its own or as part of a Tummy Tuck procedure.
Traditional liposuction involves making small incisions in the skin and using metal tubes called cannulas to suction fat deposits and reshape problem areas.
Tumescent or “Super-Wet” Liposuction
Tumescent liposuction involves injecting a large amount of sterile saline solution (harmless to the body) into the area before suction is applied. The Saline injections make the fat easier to remove, and in some cases, this technique is used because it removes the fat cells intact, allowing them to be reinjected into other areas of the body.
With Ultrasonic Liposuction, the surgeon uses a small probe that emits pulses of ultrasonic energy to break up and dislodge fat cells prior to removal.
With laser liposuction, the surgeon uses laser energy to heat and soften fat cells prior to removal.
Your Initial Liposuction Consultation
The role of the consultation is to ensure that you feel informed, confident and excited, and we’ll take as much time as we need to get there.
During your initial consultation, Dr. Min will ask you about your desired appearance, as well as any specific concerns you have about the procedure. He will also ask you questions about your general health and activity levels to determine if he can meet your expectations. He will walk you through your options, explain the details of the liposuction procedure, and answer any questions you may have. You will have an opportunity to view extensive before and after photos and see examples of the different procedures you’ve discussed.
Dr. Min will assess factors such as the quality of skin, the amount of underlying fatty tissue, and the contour of your body. He will share and explain his opinions with you about which surgical techniques are most appropriate for you based on your desired outcome and the results of your exam, and together you will decide on the details and timing of your procedure. In some cases, he may recommend additional body contouring procedures to achieve the results you desire.
Finally, Dr. Min will make sure you know exactly what will happen on the day of your procedure, what you will experience while you recover, and what you can expect in the months and years to follow.
Safety & Risks of Liposuction
There are hundreds of thousands of liposuction procedures performed every year in the US, but that doesn’t mean we cut any corners. Our approach at Newvue is always to put our patients’ safety above all other concerns, and Dr. Min is a recognized expert with an impeccable track record for liposuction. We have invested in absolutely state of the art tools, and our on-site surgical suite is one of the first in the region to be fully approved under the stringent new safety standards.
Nonetheless, we feel it is important that all our patients fully understand the risk associated with this—or any—surgical procedure. The most important thing to know is that Dr. Min and Newvue will stand by you should any complications arise and do everything we can to help you achieve your desired result.
Risks associated with liposuction include:
- Reaction to Anesthesia: Some patients experience an adverse reaction to anesthesia that may result in nausea or vomiting, allergic reactions and in very rare cases death. Be sure to discuss any medical allergies with your surgeon.
- Infection: as with any surgical procedure, there is a risk of infection. Infection will generally occur within days or weeks of your procedure, and in most cases can be treated with medication. In rare cases, and additional surgery may be required to treat severe infections
- Bleeding & Hematoma: Some patients are more prone to bruising than others and, in extreme cases, may experience excessive bruising, bleeding or skin death.
Prior to Your Liposuction Procedure
Prior to your surgery, we will schedule a preoperative appointment with Dr. Min. The purpose of this meeting is to make sure that your procedure goes smoothly and efficiently. Our staff will review your consent forms with you, answer any questions you might have, and the risks and benefits of surgery will be thoroughly reviewed. You may be given your prescriptions to be filled prior to your surgery. You will be given a list of medications and supplements to avoid for two weeks before and after surgery. If you are a smoker, you will be advised to stop smoking at least two weeks prior to surgery. You should not smoke for at least two weeks following surgery.
Your Liposuction Procedure
We will do everything in our power to help you feel informed and relaxed on the day of your procedure. After you arrive at our Bellevue office, you will meet with Dr. Min and with your anesthesiologist. Once any questions you have are answered, you will be given medication to help you relax.
You will be brought into the surgical suite, where you will be prepped for surgery and given a general anesthetic. Surgery usually takes 2-4 hours, depending on size and location of the treated area.
You will wake up in the recovery room, where you’ll be closely monitored. We’ll let you know how everything went and advise you on what to expect as you recover. You’ll want to be sure to arrange for someone to pick you up and stay with you for the first couple days as you adjust.
After Your Liposuction Procedure
You’re still our patient after you leave, and we will be there for you as you recover to answer any questions you may have and advise you on any side effects you may be feeling. You can expect to feel tired and sore after the surgery, and you will experience some swelling and discomfort in the treated area, both of which can be managed with medication.
Light activity is encouraged during your recovery, and you can resume regular, non-strenuous activity after a few days of rest. Most patients return to work in under a week, but you should avoid strenuous activity or heavy lifting for at least 2 weeks, and avoid high impact activities (skiing, wakeboarding, contact sports) for the duration of your recovery (4-8 weeks). Your stiches will dissolve and be absorbed by your body, so you will not have to worry about getting them removed.
Here’s a timeline of a typical recovery:
First 24 hours:
- Rest, eat and drink normally (no alcohol), avoid activity
- Effects of anesthesia will be gone
- You can shower
- Most patients can return to work at this point
- Swelling will peak and begin to subside
- You can remove your dressings
- Your 1st follow up consultation with Dr. Min
- Begin light exercise
- 2nd follow up consultation
- Resume normal exercise and physical activity (such as jogging)
- Resume all activities (including things like skiing, wakeboarding)
- Full results will be visible
- 1st annual checkup
Dr. Min and the Newvue staff are always available to help you with any questions or concerns you may have, during your recovery and after. We want to ensure that you are completely thrilled with your new look, and we’ll consider you our patient for life.