Liposuction FAQs

We’re happy to offer liposuction as an option for addressing our patients’ body contouring needs here at our Denver, Colorado practice. During your initial consultation, we’ll go over any questions and concerns you may have about liposuction so that you can feel confident about moving forward. To help you get started on understanding your body contouring options, we’ve answered some of our patients’ most frequently asked liposuction questions below.

When you’re ready, you can request a consultation or call 303-345-7476 to meet with board-certified plastic surgeon and liposuction specialist Dr. Frank Campanile.

Q. What Is Liposuction?

A. Liposuction is a surgical fat-reducing procedure. A narrow medical tube called a cannula is inserted through small incisions in the target area, suctioning out fat cells in the subcutaneous layer. Dr. Campanile offers two different liposuction techniques for his patients:

  • Tumescent liposuction, often referred to as traditional liposuction, uses a sterile wetting solution comprised of salt water and a local anesthetic to break up fat cells, making them easier to remove.
  • Ultrasonic liposuction, or VASER®, uses a combination of tumescent fluid and tissue-selective ultrasonic energy to break up fat cells in the subcutaneous layer before suctioning them out of the body.
    • Q. Am I a Candidate?

      A. The best candidates for liposuction are those who have unwanted fat around the abdomen, love handles or anywhere else on the body that hasn’t responded to diet and exercise. It’s important to understand that liposuction is not a weight loss alternative. Candidates should be at a healthy and stable weight before undergoing liposuction, and should have realistic expectations about their results.

      Q. Can Liposuction Reduce Cellulite?

      A. Because cellulite is not necessarily related to the amount of body fat, liposuction is not an effective treatment for cellulite. Cellulite is caused by restrictive tissue bands that bunch fat cells together, creating a dimpled appearance. Patients interested in cellulite reduction may want to consider VelaShape™ III, a nonsurgical body contouring procedure that can improve the texture of the skin.

      Q. What’s the Difference between Liposuction and a Tummy Tuck?

      A. The aim of liposuction is to permanently reduce fat deposits in the target area. Although liposuction is most commonly associated with abdominal contouring, the procedure is also frequently applied to the thighs, buttocks, back and upper arms, and can be used virtually anywhere on the body. A tummy tuck, on the other hand, is aimed at toning the abdominal muscles and tightening the stomach skin, with a secondary focus on removing excess fatty tissue. Liposuction does not affect skin laxity or the abdominal muscles.

      Q. Can I Combine Liposuction and a Tummy Tuck?

      A. Yes. In fact, Dr. Campanile specializes in combined lipoabdominoplasty using an exclusive method knows as the C.L.A.S.S.® tummy tuck. If you would like to reduce fat deposits in your abdomen while also addressing the abdominal muscles and skin, you may be a candidate for Dr. Campanile’s C.L.A.S.S.® technique, which offers patients a more comprehensive body contouring option than either procedure alone.

      Q. What Should I Expect During Surgery?

      A. The exact surgical technique will depend on the approach Dr. Campanile uses to suit your needs. In both tumescent liposuction and VASER® liposuction, small incisions are made in the target area, through which Dr. Campanile inserts a small cannula. In the case of tumescent liposuction, the cannula disperses tumescent fluid, which both anesthetizes the area and breaks apart fat cells, before suctioning them out. During VASER® liposuction, the cannula emits ultrasonic energy in addition to tumescent fluid to shake fat cells loose while leaving the surrounding tissue and nerves unharmed. The fat cells are then suctioned out. Either technique can produce excellent results on the right candidate, and Dr. Campanile can discuss which technique may produce the best results for you during your consultation.

      Q. When Will I See Results?

      A. Although liposuction produces an immediate reduction in fat, you will experience some swelling and bruising as a result of the surgery that will initially obscure your results. Most patients can see their results gradually develop over the weeks and months following surgery. You should eventually notice a reduction in targeted fat bulges, resulting in a slimmer, more streamlined figure.

      Q. Are the Results Permanent?

      A. Liposuction is designed to create long-lasting results with the permanent removal of fat cells. However, it’s important to understand that your body will continue to respond to weight fluctuations. While fat cells removed during the procedure cannot return, the remaining fat cells can expand if you don’t maintain your results with a healthy diet and regular exercise.