Have you had trouble exercising and dieting off those excess pounds of fat around your waist, tummy, hips, thighs or ankles?  How about the fat under your neck?  These collections of fat, known as lipo-dystrophy, can be easily removed using safe techniques introduced by plastic surgeons.

In our office we have converted to using the Smart Liposuction which uses a laser to soften the fat.  The procedure is performed as an outpatient using a light sedation combined with local anesthesia. Laser Assisted Smart Liposuction functions to remove collections of fat that are difficult to remove through conventional liposuction.

Once the fat is removed using Smart Lipo it is totally gone and does not recur.  Our bodies have no way to rebuild fat cells once they are removed.  The body can only enlarge the fat cells that remain.  Once the fat cells have been removed using liposuction, then that area of the body will not enlarge disproportionately if you should regain some weight.  If you are the same weight and muscle tone the results last.

Like any other techniques in surgery, liposuction must be done prudently for the right reasons.  Liposuction is not considered to be a weight loss program and should not be applied to people who are grossly overweight in order to carry out weight reduction.  Weight reduction is best accomplished by consulting your physician, starting a mild to moderate exercise program, and avoiding fast-food, fatty foods, and excess carbohydrates.  Jenny Craig and Weight Watchers are also very helpful programs.

Once you have reduced your weight and are left with small areas of lipo-dystrophy which will not disappear, then liposuction can be considered as an alternative to wearing a girdle.  The unsightly fat on the hips, lower abdomen, knees, ankles, or neck are removed through quarter inch incisions, which are strategically placed so as not to be visible.

Although costs vary across the country, generally speaking the procedure will cost between $3,500 and $7,900, depending on how many areas are treated.   While healing takes place patients wear a pressure garment girdle for periods of three to four weeks.

Complications of liposuction are few and far between.  Rarely, a patient complains of numbness of the skin in the treated areas. Numbness that occurs usually goes away in several months.

If too much fat is removed, then a permanent depression of dimple can occur.  Patients should be advised the dimples can be permanent, and that prudently removing less fat is preferable to creating dimples or a rippling effect caused by removing too much fatty tissue.

Hundreds of thousands of liposuctions have been successfully performed in the U.S.

For information on board certified plastic surgeons who perform this procedure, contact your family doctor the American Society of Plastic-Reconstructive Surgeons at 1-800-635-0635 for a free list of doctors qualified to perform liposuction.

Dr. James Apesos is a clinical professor of plastic surgery at Wright State University School of Medicine. Dr. James Apesos, a clinical professor of plastic surgery at Wright State University School of Medicine, also has a cosmetic surgery practice in Dayton, Ohio