Liposuction or body contouring has been performed in the United States for many years. However, the problem of excess facial fat has always plagued cosmetic surgeons. After using the body suction procedure, surgeons have adopted the technique for facial fat removal.
Liposuction of the face is designed to remove localized fat deposits that have accumulated in compartments surrounding certain areas of the face; such as, the cheeks, jowls, chin and neck area. In these specific areas there is maximal skin movement, and the collections of fat represent wear and tear on the tissues. The fat cells seemingly get larger and might never get any smaller with weight reduction. These fatty deposits under the skin are usually unresponsive to ordinary weight loss or exercise.
Liposuction should not be viewed as a means of weight reduction, even though the results are quite similar to that of generalized weight loss. Liposuction is very effective in improving facial contour. The procedure can be viewed as refining one’s already attractive features.
The majority of liposuction candidates are those who are at their desired weight but have noticeable fat deposits. Another candidate is the person who has difficulties losing weight but might want to refine the areas where fat bulges are apparent.
Sufficient elasticity of the skin is necessary. Age is always a factor directly related to skin elasticity. An adequate amount of elasticity on the younger candidate is normally present, so contraction of the skin will take place afterward. The older patient might lack proper skin tension. Rather than contraction, they might show signs of loose or redundant skin. Therefore, the liposuction might be combined with an additional procedure to remove the excess skin.
Before anesthesia is administered prior to the liposuction, a local sedative might be given, allowing the patient to be comfortable during the procedure. Liposuction might be performed under a local anesthesia; which numbs the area to be treated. If general anesthesia is preferred, the patient would be asleep through the entire operation.
The surgeon begins with a small incision made near the appropriate areas to be treated. A long, blunt, hollow drainage tube is inserted just under the skin. At the tube’s opposite end, a high-power suction unit is attached. The machine has a collecting system of two bottles; which reveal the amount of liquid and fat being extracted. The surgeon manipulates the extractor instrument in the tissue under the skin, separating the small fat tissue globules within minutes the fat cells are loosened and literally sucked away by the vacuum pressure.
The extractor also will sculpture the underlying fat to recontour the facial balance. Clear suction tubing is used so the surgeon has immediate, direct visualization of the aspired fat. This observation tube offers a nearly indication of the kind of material being extracted. A few sutures will close the incision, leaving little or no visible scarring. The incisions are inconspicuously made in discreet places; such as natural folds of the skin.
Following the procedure, a snug adhesive elastic dressing is placed over the entire treated area. Compression to the area not only helps reduce swelling and skin discoloration, but prevents fluid accumulation. The dressing is placed so the skin could adhere properly and conform smoothly to the shape of the underlying tissue.
Heavy lifting, bending or strenuous activities should be restricted during the recuperative time. Some swelling and skin discoloration might be present, and some patients might experience slight discomfort or numbness.