When Is Liposuction Most Effective?

Liposuction works best in healthy adults who have:

  • Relatively normal and stable weight
  • Firm, elastic skin
  • Isolated areas of fat that don’t go away with exercise or diet

The areas of the body that are most commonly treated by liposuction are:

  • Thighs
  • Hips
  • Abdomen
  • Legs (inner knees, calves, and ankles)
  • Neck, chin, and cheeks
  • Buttocks
  • Under upper arms
  • Breasts
  • Waist
  • Flanks (“love handles”)
  • Back

Liposuction may not be appropriate for some older people, because sagging or loose skin, which often occurs with aging, may not be sufficiently elastic to conform to the body’s new contour after liposuction. Age is not a major consideration, however.

Need to know:

Individuals who should avoid liposuction are those who have such problems as:

  • Obesity (more than 130 percent of their ideal body weight)
  • Uncontrolled high blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Poor circulation
  • Heart disease
  • Lung disease
  • Other severe medical problems

Nice To Know:

Q: Will liposuction reduce cellulite?

A: Liposuction will not improve cellulite, which is a collection of fat that causes the skin to look lumpy or dimpled. It could even make cellulite worse.

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