Is Liposuction for Me?

Liposuction surgery is the favored procedure for removing stubborn body fats quickly. However, not everyone can undergo the process. An eligible candidate for liposuction is physically and mentally healthy with a realistic expectation about the results.

The outcome of liposuction cannot be presumed — actual results vary from person to person depending on several factors: general health, age, fat volume removed, skin type, etc. The procedure is ideally only for those exercising and eating the right diet, but for whom some stubborn fat pockets remain in the body.

To determine qualification for liposuction, the surgeon must thoroughly examine the patient’s physical, mental, and psychological health status. A detailed assessment of the candidate’s complete medical history (conditions + medicines taken) is necessary. This can considerably lower the probability of complications during the surgery.

Pinching flanks to check for lipo

Factors Determining the Patient Eligibility for Liposuction

  • Physical Factors
    • Age: You should be at least 18 years of age to undergo surgical liposuction. The body’s development until this age may eventually nullify the effects of any contouring surgery. In addition, you need to be mentally mature to understand the pros and cons of the liposuction procedure. The decision to undergo any plastic surgery should be your own and a conscious one. Unfortunately, though, infant and child liposuction is on a rise due to the overconcern of some parents, coupled with the growing problem of obesity in children due to an unhealthy lifestyle.
    • Patient’s Health Index:  Good physical condition of the candidate helps reduce liposuction related risks. People suffering from or with a history of: heart ailments, blood coagulation issues, blood flow disorders, epileptic tendencies, blood sugar irregularities, etc. are more prone to the risks of liposuction. General weakness may also add to complications during the surgery. Therefore, any physical ill health may make you ineligible for the process. Lactating and pregnant women also do not qualify for the procedure.
    • Moderate BMI: Liposculpture is not an infallible process yielding perfect results by removing the entire body fat at one time. In fact, it is best suited for the people who are less than 20%-25% over their ideal Body Mass Index (BMI), but are suffering from exercise and diet resistant fat deposits. Such people are looking just for contouring of certain areas, like the upper arms, abdomen & waist, hips, thighs etc. The surgery is not a treatment for obesity and is definitely not for people expecting to lose 20-30 lbs in one day. A liposculpture session can safely extract a maximum of only about 8-10 lbs of liposuction fat. If you are overweight, this elimination will not bring about much visible change in your body. As a result, you will need multiple lipo sessions, which can take a heavy toll on your health. In addition, removing too much fat may leave loose, hanging skin, which will need firming treatment. In addition, those believing that they will not put on more weight after liposculpture, even if they continue with their old, unhealthy lifestyle, are mistaken. To keep your body fit and to avoid fat relapse, you need to maintain the right weight even after the surgery.
    • Stable Weight Patterns: The weight of liposuction candidates should not fluctuate. Even if it changes, it needs to be gradual and not sudden. Your surgeon may observe your weight pattern for some time before deciding on your surgery. If it is erratic, then she/he will wait until your weight stabilizes over some period of time. Any history of major weight change (gain or loss) ever, may also be considered in decision-making.
    • Drug Allergies: If you are allergic to certain chemicals especially lidocaine, you do not qualify for the surgery. Lidocaine is the local anesthesia employed in liposuction.
    • Surgical History: If you have had any operation(s) ever, do inform your surgeon to help her/him make a sound treatment decision.
    • Drug Administration: Medications, like anti-coagulants, aspirin, or anti-inflammatory drugs may increase the risk of bleeding during the procedure. You must discontinue them around two to three weeks before the liposuction surgery. In fact, do inform and consult the surgeon about all the medications you have taken in the past, especially in the last six months, and the ones you currently take.
    • Addictions: Excessive alcohol intake and smoking can considerably increase the risks of liposuction. You must inform your doctor about your lifestyle habits. You have to quit any form of nicotine and alcohol consumption at least two to three weeks prior to the surgery.
    • Skin Quality: A skin with weak elasticity may turn wrinkled, loose, and/or dented after the procedure. This is one of the key reasons for the elderly not making good liposuction patients. If the skin elasticity is poor, you may need to pursue an additional skin firming procedure after lipo.
  • Psychological Factors
    • Psychological Patients: Those undergoing any psychiatric or psychological treatment, especially for depression, may not be eligible for liposuction. The results, if they go wrong, may create a further psychological disturbance in the patient. A sound mental and emotional health is necessary for any plastic surgery.
    • Realistic Expectations: A realistic approach to the whole procedure and its result(s) is vital here. You need to be emotionally and mentally mature to understand that liposuction will not metamorphose you exactly as you imagine. You should be mentally strong and determined to accept the result. Liposuction is not a treatment for obesity. It is surgically impossible and unsafe to remove the entire body fat in one sitting, even in large volume liposuction. An overweight person may need to undergo multiple surgical procedures to come down to a near normal size. In addition, note that liposuction is not a skin treatment surgery. It does not firm up the loose skin and does not remove cellulite, scars, or stretch marks.
    • Determination: You have to be mentally tough to handle the stress the body and mind undergo throughout the process. You should start maintaining a healthy lifestyle before the actual surgery. A changed outlook, coupled with nutritious diet and fit lifestyle help maintain the cosmetic alterations. This requires a strong will, awareness, and perseverance.
    • Mental Preparation: Be prepared and knowledgeable before taking up any body contouring surgery. Get all possible information about the procedure. Talking to an expert, reading about the process, and speaking to the people who have undergone similar surgery, can be very helpful.
  •  Financial  Preparation: Plastic      surgery is usually expensive and at times may need many follow-ups. The  whole project may be very expensive. Therefore seek such surgery only if  it is impossible to do without, and if your finances can cover the treatments as long as required.