Liposuction can successfully eliminate stubborn fatty deposits which have been unresponsive to diet and exercise, enabling the patient to achieve a slimmer, sculpted figure.
During consultations, patients commonly ask surgeons how much fat liposuction can safely eliminate. There is an upper limit for fat removal. However, this decision is ultimately made on the basis of an individual patient’s health condition and cosmetic goals.
The maximum amount of fat that can be eliminated safely with liposuction cosmetic surgery is between six to eight pounds (three to four liters). The risk of serious complications increases with greater amounts of fat being removed.
If a patient needs fat removal in excess of six to eight pounds, the surgeon will likely divide the liposuction process into separate surgical procedures, each spaced several weeks apart.
Board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Bram Kaufman provides liposuction to patients in Beachwood, Pepper Pike, Cleveland, OH, and surrounding locations.
Removing Larger Amounts of Fat
It is important to understand that eliminating the largest possible amount of fat does not necessarily produce the best outcomes. Liposuction is not a weight loss treatment. It is a procedure that is meant for body contouring by eliminating targeted fat pockets from particular areas.
In case the patient’s objective is to lose weight, then liposuction is likely not an appropriate procedure for them. The patient will need to reach their target weight before the surgeon deems them to be an ideal candidate for liposuction surgery.
For many patients, the removal of smaller amounts of fat will create more natural looking outcomes in a safe manner. There is no reason to remove 10 to 12 pounds of fat if the patient can attain their goals by removing three to four pounds of fat/fluid.
Factors Impacting Fat Removal
- The treatment area
- The overall body weight
- The body shape
- If the patient is undergoing additional procedures along with liposuction
Patients should know that liposuction cosmetic surgery is not designed for weight loss. The procedure is suitable for individuals near their ideal weight to provide additional contouring that cannot be attained with diet and exercise alone. For a majority of patients, the removal of a relatively small amount of fat can achieve this goal.
Risks Associated with Eliminating Too Much Fat
There are various problems that may occur if the patient undergoes excessive fat loss during liposuction. It increases the possibility of achieving undesirable outcomes leading to the hollow dimpling of the skin or lumps. But the most vital reason to avoid eliminating too much fat is that the patient faces increased safety risks.
Liposuction is an incredibly safe procedure. However, the risk of complications is much higher with excessive fat removal. Potential risks include the following:
- Seroma and hematoma formation
- Fat embolism (a small amount of emulsified fat entering the bloodstream)
- Poor response to anesthesia
- Dehydration-induced shock
- A build-up of excess fluid that may affect breathing
- Blood clots
The liposuction procedure becomes more extended and involved with the removal of a larger amount of fat. This can also affect the recovery duration. Plastic surgeon Dr. Bram Kaufman receives patients from Beachwood, Pepper Pike, Cleveland, OH, and nearby areas for liposuction.