Frank Agullo, MDBoard Certified Plastic Surgeon

Liposuction

Liposuction, also called lipoplasty or liposculpture, is a cosmetic surgical procedure that permanently removes fat from the body via vacuum suctioning. The goal of liposuction is not weight loss but rather to reduce fatty deposits from stubborn areas, enhance muscle definition, provide a more feminine or masculine shape, and/or improve the contours of the body.

Do you...

  • Have stubborn fat deposits that will not disappear despite consistent diet and exercise?
  • Want to have firmer body contours and more noticeable muscle tone?
  • Desire a more feminine/masculine silhouette?
  • Need to lose inches from your arms, waist, hips, chest, thighs, or buttocks?
  • Wish to be more comfortable in clothing and wear smaller sizes?
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Liposuction Options (Often Combined)

Liposuction alone does not remove excess skin or cellulite, but Dr. Agullo can create a customized approach that meets those needs by combining liposuction with other procedures. At your initial consultation, you and Dr. Agullo will discuss your goals and expectations to arrive at the best surgical plan.

Traditional Liposuction

  • Removes fat from stubborn areas
  • Commonly used for the abdomen, flanks (love handles), arms, back, lateral chest (side boob), thighs, saddlebags, mons, and neck
  • Creates a feminine abdomen

Liposculpture

  • Removes fat from unwanted areas and transfers it to other areas for contouring
  • Removed fat can be added to the buttocks (Brazilian Butt Lift, or BBL), biceps, pectoral muscles (for men), calves, biceps, and triceps
  • Often used to even out asymmetries from one side of the body to the other

4D Liposculpture / Etching

  • Removes fat from unwanted places
  • Defines muscles including obliques, rectus abdominus (six pack), biceps, chest (for men), and calves
  • Creates a muscular abdomen by etching the six pack and obliques

Technique

Dr. Agullo offers all his patients a combination of tumescent and power-assisted liposuction (PAL). Although there are other power-assisted systems such as Vaserlipo® (ultrasound-assisted liposuction) and Smartlipo® (laser-assisted liposuction), Dr. Agullo has not seen an advantage with these systems but rather the added risk of burns and longer surgical times.

arrowTumescent Liposuction

  • Also called traditional liposuction or traditional lipoplasty
  • Uses general anesthesia
  • A tumescent solution is injected to numb the area, reduce bleeding, and aid in fat removal
  • Minimal bruising and scarring
  • Can be used to remove fat from the arms, back, abdomen, hips, buttocks, and thighs
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arrowPower-Assisted Liposuction (PAL)

  • Uses local “awake” anesthesia
  • A rapidly vibrating cannula breaks up the fat before it is removed
  • Slightly gentler than the traditional technique
  • More fat can be removed in a shorter time
  • Can be used on any area of the body
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Liposuction Procedure

procedure
Either general anesthesia or sedation anesthesia is administered during liposuction, and only a few small incisions are needed in the chosen area for fat removal. Liposuction surgical techniques vary, but they all involve the same basic steps:
  • Infiltration of fluid to wet, numb, and shrink the blood vessels
  • Preparation of the fatty tissue layer for removal
  • Removal of the fatty tissue by suctioning
During surgery, Dr. Agullo uses his steady hand to maneuver the fat-suctioning device (cannula) in a back-and-forth motion. Vacuum suctioning then permanently removes the fat from the body. Dr. Agullo checks his work for symmetry and smoothness and then closes the incisions with sutures.

Achieved With Liposuction

  • Restores firm body contours for an attractive silhouette
  • Reduces inches from multiple areas of the body
  • Removes stubborn fat from trouble zones
  • Results in confidence and several inches lost
  • Will not result in substantial weight loss
  • Will not restore skin quality or improve stretch marks
  • Will not remove excess skin
  • Will not reduce cellulite

Preparing for Your Surgery

Patients who achieve the best results with liposuction do not smoke and should be off of blood-thinning medications two weeks prior to surgery. They should plan for someone to drive them to and from surgery and assist them for the first 24 hours after the procedure. Two weeks is usually enough time for recovery and scheduled time off from work.
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Liposuction FAQs

arrowWho are the best candidates for liposuction?

The best candidates for liposuction are healthy men and women who wish to improve the appearance of stubborn fat deposits or who wish to have more visible muscle definition. Those who experience the best results are at or near their ideal weight and have maintained their weight for at least three months.

arrowWhat expectations should I have for liposuction results?

Patients should know that liposuction is not intended for significant weight loss, cellulite removal, or skin removal. Results with liposuction may not be apparent for several weeks until the swelling has fully subsided. Your more slender contours are generally permanent, but childbirth or weight gain after surgery will influence your final outcome.

arrowWhat are the risks of liposuction?

If a patient needs to have a significant amount of fat removed with liposuction, Dr. Agullo may recommend dividing the procedure into smaller targeted surgeries over the course of a month because an extensive procedure involves greater risks. Complications with liposuction are rare, but the risks include infection, edema, hematoma, seroma, and problems with anesthesia. In general, liposuction is considered a safe cosmetic procedure.

arrowWhat other procedures can accompany liposuction?

Virtually any cosmetic procedure can be performed in conjunction with liposuction. The advantage of combining procedures is a lower overall cost and less time spent in surgery and recovery. Tummy tuck surgery is most commonly chosen as an adjunct to liposuction because it removes excess skin and fat at the same time. Since liposuction does not remove excess skin, other skin removal surgeries, such as the arm lift, body lift, and thigh lift, are also performed along with liposuction to produce the best results.

arrowHow extensive is liposuction recovery?

The extent of recovery will depend on the area treated with liposuction, the number of incisions, and whether or not it was combined with other procedures. Liposuction is commonly an outpatient procedure, but a hospital stay may be required for combination procedures.

After surgery, there may be some tenderness, swollen areas, or pain, which is all temporary. Any discomfort can be managed with pain medication, and compression garments help to significantly reduce swelling. Walking will prevent blood clots, poor circulation, strokes, and other complications. Most patients are cleared to resume exercise after two weeks.

arrowHow much does liposuction cost?

Most El Paso liposuction procedures will range from $3,800 to $12,000. The cost will vary depending on the extent of the procedure and whether it was combined with other procedures. A more precise estimate will be determined at your initial consultation.

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