Liposuction is a form of cosmetic surgery which can be used to remove unwanted body fat where it tends to accumulate the most. This means places like the hips, thighs, buttocks and tummy. The term “tummy tuck” really means using liposuction to remove unwanted fat around the stomach.
As liposuction is almost always an option used to improve appearance, i.e. it is cosmetic, it is rarely available for free on the NHS. Liposuction usually means turning to a private cosmetic surgery and paying the market price for the procedure.
In some circumstances, the NHS will consider carrying out liposuction on you for free. Usually, this is because of an earlier condition or operation which has left you with surplus fat. You will normally go to your doctor to discuss your needs and if he or she considers that your circumstances mean you have a chance to get treatment on the NHS, then you will be referred to a hospital for potential treatment.
Why use liposuction?
Some people opt to have liposuction even when there are simpler and cheaper ways of ridding one’s body of excess fat. It is unlikely that liposuction can help the very obese individual. Rather, it is used when the amount of excess fat is moderate. This fat may have accumulated because of lifestyle choices: too much to eat and not enough exercise or it may be a combination of genes, lifestyle and particular circumstances, or even a medical reason. It makes sense to try and get rid of your excess fat the conventional way before considering cosmetic surgery. Remember that even when liposuction has made you into a slimmer, more natural looking self that it could all come back again if you don’t make life changing lifestyle decisions sooner or later.
What is involved in liposuction?
Liposuction is not the use of some type of ointment or cream. It is relatively invasive because it involves surgery. It basically involves removing unwanted fat cells in parts of the body where they are overactive. To do this, the surgeon will need to make a small incision in one or more places on your body and then use a tube to suck out the surplus or excess fat cells. The surgeon may also use a machine which breaks up the clumps of fat cells before the suction tube is used.
Because the surgery involves making incisions in parts of your body it may result in considerable pain. Normally, liposuction involves the use of a general anaesthetic or a local anaesthetic. The choice depends on the extent of the fat that needs to be removed. If a general anaesthetic is used, it usually means that the person stays for at least a single night in hospital and then goes home. The incisions are sewn back again and you will take several weeks before your body recovers fully. There are a few situations in which complications arise, but no more than any other relatively minor surgery.
Choosing the right cosmetic surgeon
It is important to choose a qualified and experienced cosmetic surgeon who has training specifically in the techniques used in cosmetic surgery. It is important that you choose someone who will be able to carry out the surgery in proper conditions and do so safely and effectively. You can check out the list of reliable cosmetic surgeons on anyclinic.co.uk and in any case make an appointment with your doctor to discuss the option. Your doctor may also be able to refer you to a suitable cosmetic surgeon with the relative qualifications to carry out liposuction.