A technique called "tumescent liposuction" is the most common method for removing fat around the stomach, buttocks, thighs and ankles. It's also considered the safest. "Tumescent" means that large amounts of buffered salt water are injected into fatty tissue beneath the skin. The doctor makes a cut in the fatty area to be treated, then inserts beneath the flesh a strawlike tube called a cannula that is attached to a vacuum. At the end of the cannula is a stiff wand. The doctor moves it back and forth in rapid motions to loosen fat. The procedure takes 45 minutes to two hours, with a recovery time of up to two weeks. The full effect of liposuction is seen six to 12 weeks after the procedure is performed. After the procedure, the area is bandaged and the patient must wear a compression garment for one to two weeks. Pain and bruising may last up to two weeks, and swelling may last for two weeks to two months.

Dr. Kao believes that the best results are achieved when the correct procedure is performed on the right patient. The Alexandra Breast Lift can be performed with or without implants and can provide beautiful results on specific patients. However, if you aren’t the right patient for this technique, Dr. Kao will evaluate your needs and develop a treatment plan that works for you. Stay tuned for our next blog on breast lift candidates and the consultation process.
Traditional Liposuction: In traditional liposuction, the surgeon uses a thin tube called a cannula, connected to a powerful suction pump. After inserting the cannula through a small incision, the plastic surgeon helps break up the fat by manipulating the cannula and injecting fluid into the area. Although it does carry some risks, traditional liposuction is very effective in taking out fat, and it is still one of the most popular forms of the procedure.
A technique called "tumescent liposuction" is the most common method for removing fat around the stomach, buttocks, thighs and ankles. It's also considered the safest. "Tumescent" means that large amounts of buffered salt water are injected into fatty tissue beneath the skin. The doctor makes a cut in the fatty area to be treated, then inserts beneath the flesh a strawlike tube called a cannula that is attached to a vacuum. At the end of the cannula is a stiff wand. The doctor moves it back and forth in rapid motions to loosen fat. The procedure takes 45 minutes to two hours, with a recovery time of up to two weeks. The full effect of liposuction is seen six to 12 weeks after the procedure is performed. After the procedure, the area is bandaged and the patient must wear a compression garment for one to two weeks. Pain and bruising may last up to two weeks, and swelling may last for two weeks to two months.
Also known as a vertical lift, this technique requires surgeons to make a keyhole shaped incision on the breast, preserving the nipple but removing any excess skin below it. The areola is then shifted up into its new position, while suturing the skin edges together results in a lollipop shaped scar around the nipple and a vertical line down to the breast crease.
Liposuction is generally used in an attempt to change the body's shape.[1] Weight loss from liposuction appears to be of a short term nature with little long term effect.[2] After a few months fat typically returns and redistributes.[2] Liposuction does not help obesity related metabolic disorders like insulin resistance.[3] It can also be used to remove excess fat in the chronic medical condition lymphedema.[8]
Liposuction is a procedure that can be performed either under local or general anesthesia. Local anesthesia allows you to remain conscious during surgery, but the treatment area is numbed so you will not feel any discomfort. This option can cost about $100 or more per hour. General anesthesia is used to completely sedate the patient. If it is administered by a nurse, general anesthesia can cost $300 or more per hour. When it is administered by an anesthesiologist, it can cost $450 or more per hour. Deciding which method of anesthesia to use largely depends on the extent of treatment. If the patient is having a small amount of fat removed, local anesthesia may be sufficient. On the other hand, if the patient is having extensive liposuction performed, or if it is being performed in conjunction with other procedures, general anesthesia will probably be the best option.
Liposuction of the entire thigh (circumferential liposuction) is not recommended due to an increase in swelling and lengthened recovery time. Rather, liposuction should be performed in a series of surgeries spaced about one month apart. Focusing the procedure on one specific area of the hips allows the lymphatic tissue to drain excess fluids quickly and evenly throughout the thigh, yielding more desirable results in a shorter amount of time. Liposuction of the thighs may be performed with thigh lift surgery.
Botox Breast Lift: There are more and more uses of Botox that researchers are finding as time goes on. A Botox Breast Lift is not an approved use of botox by the FDA. Here’s how it works: Botox is injected into your pectoralis muscle. This causes a relaxation of the muscles in the chest and your back muscles then begin to lift your breast. The lifting is not dramatic though and it only lasts about three to four months. The advantage, however, is that there are no scars because surgery was not done. There’s also no recovery time as there is with a breast lift surgery.
Recovery also involves unique expenses. Compression garments are very important in liposuction recovery, aiding the healing process and helping the skin conform to your refined contours. I usually provide one free garment. Subsequent garments can cost between $50 and $100. During your recovery, you will be prescribed pain medication to ensure your comfort. Depending upon whether insurance covered any portion of your treatment, and the specific pain medication prescribed, this can cost can range from under a hundred dollars to several hundred dollars.

LipoSelection® : This specialized form of liposuction, developed by VASER®, emulsifies fat cells with ultrasound and breaks them up even further with the LipoSelection probe. The doctor can then easily remove the fat with liposuction tubes, leaving the surrounding blood vessels, nerves and other tissue virtually unaffected. This technique involves less discomfort and bruising than most other types of liposuction, but it does cost a bit more than other forms of manual liposuction.


Certain health conditions may prevent patients from being suitable liposuction candidates. People with chronic ailments such as diabetes and high blood pressure are more likely to achieve less-than-desirable aesthetic results. Individuals who have compromised immune systems and those who suffer from diabetes, poor blood circulation, heart disease, or lung disease should not undergo liposuction, as they could suffer serious health complications. If patients have recently had another surgery in the area they would like to treat, they should wait until the area has healed before considering liposuction.
Finally, there’s the so-called scarless lift. Women who are seeking a mild lift but are dead set against leaving scars anywhere on their breasts may opt for a technique that uses a network of dissolving surgical threads inserted through tiny incisions along the collar bone, guided under the breast tissue, and then anchored to the collar bone, to create an internal bra of sorts. Scar tissue forms around the threads, theoretically providing support to lift the nipple.
A: It’s difficult to answer “how much” sensitivity you can expect to lose after breast lift surgery but most patients report that they are able to retain complete or near complete sensation. During the initial postoperative period, there may be a temporary loss or decrease in sensation primarily due to swelling. As the swelling subsides, the sensation will return. There is the potential that you may experience a change in the sensitivity of your nipples and the skin of your breast. On occasion, patients have reported that their nipples are “supersensitive.” In this case desensitization, exercises can be performed to diminish the sensitivity. This involves gently rubbing the nipples with cotton ball and then progressing to a more course material.

Ultrasound-assisted liposuction techniques used in the 1980s and 1990s were associated with cases of tissue damage, usually from excessive exposure to ultrasound energy.[10] Third-generation UAL devices address this problem by using pulsed energy delivery and a specialized probe that allows physicians to safely remove excess fat.[11] UAL is beneficial in people with a particular skin tone, in liposuction of areas that are more difficult to remove fat, that include treatment of gynecomastia, or areas where secondary liposuction is being performed.[12]
Congratulations on caring enough for yourself to get the body you want. As excited as you may be by the immediate results, you want to make sure you heal your best, with embrace® Active Scar Defense. It’s the only scar treatment that’s clinically proven to help prevent the appearance of dark, raised, visible scars and is recommended by doctors and patients. Here’s what you need to know:
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