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Liposuction-Information, Complications and Prices

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 Liposuction in Phoenix/Scottsdale

Dr. A. Chasby Sacks, M.D. is the pioneer of liposuction in Arizona. He was the first Surgeon to perform liposuction here and has been performing the procedure on men and women for over 25 years. Areas of the body that respond well to liposuction surgery include the neck and jowls, cheeks, upper arms, inner and outer thighs, buttocks, knees, hips and abdomen. Liposuction may also be used for small breast reductions in cases where there's little sagging or to remove fat at the sides of the breast. In a small percentage of cases, only the small liposuction scars would be necessary. This procedure is becoming more popular because the tiny incisions greatly reduce scarring. Men with enlarged breasts (gynecomastia) can also benefit from this technique.

Liposuction surgery is a surgical procedure in which fat cells are removed from the body. A small  metal tube or cannula is attached to a high-pressure vacuum suction inserted through a small incision in the skin and extracts excess fat cells. Because the procedure does not involve large incisions and extensive cutting, there is little pain, rapid healing and minimal scarring. Most patients are completely ambulatory immediately after surgery.

Dr. Sacks was one of the first 10 surgeons in the USA to use the safer water cooled ultrasonic liposuction machine which he felt had certain advantages in achieving the best possible results. Now Dr. Sacks prefers to use a laser to assist in liposuction - Laser assisted Liposuction (LAL). This FDA approved device allows easier removal of fat and decreases inflammation, lessens pain, and speeds healing. ( Channel 10 News interviewed Dr. Sacks regarding this laser).

Make an appointment to visit Dr. Sacks and learn more about the newest advances in liposuction. Please call Arizona Cosmetic Surgery at (602) 277-1111. If you are outside of Arizona, please call (800) 765-2771. 

                     Liposuction: My experience for the past 20 years+

                               ( From dumb cannulas to Smart Lipo and beyond).

              Chasby Sacks, M.D., Medical Director of Arizona Cosmetic Surgery

     As the pioneer of Liposuction in Arizona I have seen many techniques come and go. A patient of mine first saw a Merv Griffin TV show (so you know how long ago this was), where they talked about this new technique where fat could be removed from the body. She came to me and said "You need to start doing that so I can get it done!" and so I called one of the first surgeons in the United States to have performed liposuction and had his instrument maker make me a cannula. This was a hollow stainless steel instrument with openings that were too large and had cutting edges moving forwards and backwards. The instrument was too wide and too aggressive.

Since this time many advancements have been made. The next step was smaller, thinner cannulas with blunt edges. This produced a much smoother skin surface and allowed for some skin shrinkage or contracture. Instruments have also been produced with little rotating blades in them which cut the fat off  but they caused too much bleeding.

The next next huge advance was the use of large amounts of vey dilute local anesthetic containing a substance called epinephrine which shrinks blood vessels and thereby less bleeding. This was called Tumescent Liposuction.The Tumescent Liposuction technique helped make Liposuction much safer as it assured much less bleeding and bruising and the operation could be done with much less sedation or general anesthesia.

Helping the operator to move the cannula more easily through the fat was the addition of an engine to drive the cannula back and forth making for less fatigue for the surgeon and therefore greater ability to sculpt and shape the fat.

Next came Ultrasonic Liposuction. This emulsified the fat, making it more liquid and therefore easier to remove. Unfortunately these instruments also produced heat which could burn the skin so the instrument was wrapped in a metal sheath through which water was passed to cool the cannula.This made the instruments a little thicker and the machines expensive and because non-cooled instruments caused some burns to the skin, this technique fell into disrepute.

 Now comes the era of the laser. The first type was a diode laser which is said to open the fat cells pores allowing for the fat to be liquified and either then removed by traditional liposuction or as is now claimed, to be absorbed by the body’s clean up system without the need for traditional liposuction. More investigation of this latest technique is needed.

 Now we get to "Smart lipo". While this system has been hyped as usual in the media and by the laser manufactures, when honest objective surgeons reported their experiences with this laser liposuction it becomes obvious that the skin tightening results are variable and unpredictable and not much better than traditional liposuction.

 One of the latest techniques and concepts seems to have significant potential. There is Radio frequency Assisted Liposuction or BodyTite and is performed by passing a carefully monitored amount of radio frequency waves through the tumesced fat to be treated. This liquifies the fat and also heats up the skin and its collagen. This causes shrinkage of the skin. The liquid fat is then easily removed by traditional liposuction. Results so far indicate the possibility of this being a valuable alternative to all the different ways of performing liposuction.

Another new technique is to loosen the fat cells from their attachments with a jet of water and then remove them by gentle suction. The manufacturers claim less bleeding from this technique.

A technique that is one of the newest to hit the markets is "Tickle Lipo" -also called Nutational Infrasonic Liposuction or N.I.L. In this method a rotating device apparently sweeps off the fat from the tissue more gently and the vibration of the cannula tricks the bodies nerves into feeling much less pain and only a tickling feeling-hence the name.

 Conclusion: Newer techniques may add certain advantages but it is always the experience, artistry and skill of the Surgeon that are the most important factors.

 

Chasby Sacks, M.D. is the Medical Director of Arizona Cosmetic Surgery. If you are would like a free consultation with Dr. Sacks call 602 277-1111.

 

Liposuction (or lipoplasty) is a body-sculpting procedure to remove fat that is unresponsive to dieting and exercising.  This procedure can be applied to nearly any area of the body and is commonly used on multiple areas during an operation.  Liposuction results in a slimmer and better proportioned figure.  Liposuction is used effectively to reduce love handles, saddlebags, a double-chin, a bulge around the waistline, or other unsightly fatty deposits in order to develop a better shape and create a more beautiful body.

Reasons for Considering Liposuction:

  • Eliminate fat from any of the following areas:
    • Chin and Neckline
    • Back/bra area
    • Upper Arms
    • Stomach and Waistline
    • Hips and Buttocks
    • Thighs and Knees
    • Calves and Ankles
  • Create a more proportioned figure
  • Use the fat to enlarge (augment) the buttock. Known as the Brazilian Butt Lift, this procedure has sky-rocketed in popularity due to its safety and effectiveness. Fat is taken from any area by liposuction, treated and then carefully re-injected into the buttock area.
  • Use the fat to fill in areas of the face which are sunken in from age or disease.
  • Use the fat for hand rejuvenation. In this procedure, the fat is carefully re-injected into the back of the hand to soften and fill in the effects of aging and/or weight loss.
  • Use the fat to fill in areas where fat has been lost ny injury or disease.

Liposuction should not be a replacement for proper exercise and diet.  Instead, liposuction is a reduction procedure for stubborn areas where fat accumulates.  Used in combination with several areas of the body, liposuction can provide a much more proportioned body appearance.  Ideal surgical candidates are those already in fair condition but having stubborn areas that do not respond to diet and exercise.  However, liposuction can be performed on most patients who desire the changes.

General Procedure

Liposuction can be done under general anesthesia with the patient asleep or under local anesthesia with sedation where the area is numbed and the patient remains somewhat awake but comfortable.  Through a tiny incision, a narrow tube or “cannula” is inserted and used to vacuum out the fatty tissue beneath the skin.  The surgeon determines the amount of fat to be removed by feeling the fat under the skin and squeezing the tissue.  After eliminating the excess fat, the incisions are NOT closed  with sutures but by applying a compression dressing or bandage to the area in order to prevent bleeding, reduce swelling, and support the affected area.

There are several different types of liposuction procedures, such as tumescent or laser liposuction, that have developed as a result of recent advancements in new technologies.  Together the patient and the surgeon can discuss which method(s) are best during the initial consultation visit.  Liposuction can last from thirty minutes to several hours depending upon the amount of fat to be removed and the areas involved. Liposuction surgery is an excellent procedure that can benefit those who want to remove unattractive fatty deposits.

Recovery Process

New techniques  such as laser liposuction allow for faster recovery from liposuction procedures.  The length of the recovery will depend on how extensive of an operation the patient undergoes.  Generally, post-operative instructions call for plenty of rest with gradual increase in activity and movement in order to speed up the healing process and reduce the recovery time.  A support garment may need to be worn for several weeks after the surgery, depending upon which area(s) are selected to utilize the liposuction procedure. Following the procedure, Laser treatments and massage may be used to hasten healing. Patients sometimes report moderate pain associated with surgery which can be treated effectively with oral medication.  While complications are rare, patients can minimize the risk for potential problems by carefully following the directions given after surgery.

Complications of Liposuction

  • Swelling is generally modest and usually not as much as the original bulges. Applying cold packs,  limiting salt intake and following instructions on activity given to you by Dr. Sacks and his staff will help ensure the quickest recovery.
  • Bruising is also minimal and is helped again by cold packs and gentle massaging of the tissue.
  • Pain is helped by the ice packs and is usually modest and present only for the first few days. Pain medication will be prescribed by Dr. Sacks.
  • Numbness in the skin may occasionally be present especially after liposuction of the lower back area. It is almost always temporary and returns to normal after a few months.
  • Infection is exceptional as all patients are started on antibiotics starting on the day before the surgery and continuing for about a weeminimal and is related to the patients age, the condition of the skin before the surgery and of course, thek after the surgery.
  • Skin irregularity is usually  skill of the surgeon. Dr. Sacks has performed liposuction longer than anyone in Arizona. Occasionally skin tightening procedures such as Tummy Tuck (abdominoplasty) are needed  to obtain the best results.
  • Bleeding accompanies all liposuction and is maximal for the night of surgery and the next day. After this it slows down and then stops after a few days. Bleeding is kept to a minimum by avoiding blood thinning medication and herbs as directed  by Dr. Sacks and keeping activity at first to a minimum and then gradual increasing it.

Prices of Liposuction vary a great deal as there are so many variables such as how many areas of the body need surgery, is a Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty) neccesary and the type of anesthesia chosen to name a few.

The range of pricing would start as low as $2500 (neck) to more than $10,000  (tummy tuck) with multiple area liposuction as an example.

If you are interested in liposuction call Arizona Cosmetic Surgery at 602 277-1111 for your free consultation.