Small Volume Liposuction & Liposculpture in Melbourne | Dr Patrick Briggs Plastic Surgeon
About Liposuction – Avoid Large Volume Liposuction
Unlike so-called cosmetic surgeons, our plastic surgeons believe liposuction should be used to remove small amounts of excess stubborn fat to help improve your body contours.
Small Volume Liposuction is also an excellent addition to some cosmetic plastic surgeries like Tummy Tuck, Breast Surgery and Fat Grafting to the Breast.
Liposuction is NOT a solution Weightloss
Please Note that Liposuction is NOT a weight loss procedure and performing large volume liposuction causes many problems. The ideal candidate for Liposuction is near their healthy weight range (BMI < 30).
You may need to see a Melbourne Bariatric Surgeon for obesity issues.
Please Send In Your Photos before a Consult
Liposuction is NOT for everyone, perhaps you need excess skin removal or another procedure altogether.
Before booking an appointment at Coco Ruby you will need to send in your photos to ensure you are a suitable candidate for Liposuction.
What is Liposuction?
Small Volume Liposuction is a cosmetic procedure that removes fat from targeted areas such as the abdomen, love handles, arms, buttocks, legs, and even the neck.
It involves using a suction technique to remove fat pockets from the body, resulting in a more contoured appearance.
Liposuction can be done either on its own or in combination with other cosmetic surgeries. That being said, it is not a cure for weight loss. However, it is recommended as a body contouring procedure for stubborn fat pockets.
If you are wanting to lose weight dramatically, liposuction/liposculpture are not the right options. Furthermore, you should avoid so-called high-volume mega liposuction performed by underqualified doctors.
You may consider weight loss surgery or seek weight loss help – see www.newbodyspecialists.com.au for ideas.
If you have lost a lot of weight and have excess loose sagging skin then body lift surgeries like a tummy tuck or arm lift may help.
Am I the Right Candidate for Liposuction?
Liposuction gets rid of small amounts of stubborn fat that are difficult to get rid of with exercise and diet alone. While it’s a useful treatment, it is not a suitable option for everyone.
If you are looking for body contouring treatments like liposuction, below are some criteria;
You’ll need to have realistic expectations about the treatment. If you are looking for a contoured body and not just drop weight overnight or get rid of cellulite, this is the right treatment option.
You also need to have great skin elasticity. People with thicker skin have good elasticity and tend to show better results with liposuction as they do not have the problem of excess loose skin.
Your weight needs to be stable for at least a year. If your weight fluctuates, it is advisable not to choose liposuction. Instead, you should wait for it to stabilize and then opt for the treatment.
You do not drink or smoke or alternatively you can quit smoking and drinking for an extended period of time both before and after the surgery.
You are already in good health condition, lead a healthy lifestyle and have no chronic illnesses. Healthy patients are less likely to experience complications, and will therefore get the best possible outcome.
If you need to reduce fat in specific areas such as love handles, abdomen or any other areas where it is difficult to lose weight then liposuction may help.
Benefits of Liposuction
Liposuction comes with many benefits including:
- Enhanced body contours.
- Long-lasting. If you have a stable weight, your weight will not increase for years after the procedure.
- It can improve your overall health as a result of fat loss.
- Reduces excessive sweating and chafing.
- Unlike many other procedures, patients can see immediate results. Although there will be some swelling after the treatment it will significantly reduce after a day or so.
- It is an option for men who face the problem of man boobs also known as gynecomastia.
- Partially and completely remove lipomas in certain areas.
- Can help patients struggling with lipodystrophy syndrome (a disturbance in fat metabolism which results in rigid fat deposits in some areas while none in others).
- Encourages patients to lead a healthy lifestyle to maintain the results of liposuction.
About Liposuction Surgery
Liposuction is the process of permanently removing fat through suctioning. It is not a substitute treatment for weight loss but, rather, a method of reshaping the body’s contours.
As we advance in life, the body tends to remap the areas where it deposits most of the excess fatty tissue. The flanks, lower abdomen and thighs become common targets in women. While in men it is commonly the abdomen flanks and chest.
In some people, even at a young age, there are stubborn fatty tissue deposits, mostly around the thighs, which seem to be genetic.
Liposuction is the removal of fat from deposits beneath the skin using a hollow stainless steel tube called a cannula and a powerful vacuum.
Both men and women undergo this procedure. However, it is not a method of weight reduction. Rather, it is a way to remove stubborn fatty deposits that remain despite dieting, exercise and/or massage.
In the early days of liposuction, the procedure involved using relatively large cannulae and was associated with extensive bruising and a higher risk of irregularities.
Today, liposuction uses much finer cannulae. This results in less trauma to the tissue and allows more control in the removal of fat. Furthermore, surgeons can use these finer cannulae closer to the skin surface to provide a superior result.
Surgeons no long consider the earlier approach, Dry Technique Liposuction effective. Today, the worldwide standard of care is the Tumescent Technique.
In tumescent liposuction the area undergoing treatment is injected with a buffered salt solution. This solution contains adrenaline to control bleeding and a long-acting local anaesthetic to minimise discomfort after the procedure.
Recent advances in Liposuction
A more recent addition to body sculpting surgery is the impressive LipoSelection technology termed VASER®. Based on an ultrasonic-assisted system, it allows for a carefully controlled and gentle surgical process to dissolve areas of fatty tissue deposition. You can use this form of liposuction safely around the face, neck, body and limbs.
The benefits of the technique include;
- Less post-operative bruising and swelling post-operatively
- Faster recovery
- Smoother surface even after more intense contouring.
Because of its ability to reduce irregularities, the process has been reliably used in abdominal etching. It has also given rise to the concept of high-definition liposuction.
Liposuction Before and After Photos
You can visit our clinic to see real patients Before and After Liposuction photographs. This is a great way of seeing the typical results our patients get.
*Results depend on individual patient circumstances and can vary significantly.
How do I Prepare for Lipoplasty?
During your consultation, Dr Briggs will brief you on the procedure and what you need to do prior to the day.
Your surgeon will most likely ask you about current medications and supplements you are taking and possibly suggest alternatives if they could interfere with your surgery.
Generally, surgeons will ask you to stop taking any blood-thinning medications for 2 to 4 weeks prior to the surgery.
Dr Briggs might also ask you to get a few lab tests done.
Furthermore, in certain cases, the doctor will ask you to stay overnight. So you will need to make the necessary arrangements.
Download a free guide
Take advantage of our FREE GUIDE TO YOUR PROCEDURE that includes resources for plastic surgery patients. They’ll assist with your journey from thinking about having plastic surgery to aftercare and recovery.
If you’d like more information about a particular surgery, please call our surgical support team on 1300 264 811 between 9 am – 5 pm on weekdays.
Recovery after Liposuction Surgery
Post Op Instructions
- It’s important to follow your post-surgery instructions closely to ensure you have a safe recovery process and positive surgery results.
- It’s common to have some weight gain due to swelling and tumescent fluid. This will resolve over time.
Wearing Post Op Garments
- Compression garments are often necessary for anywhere from three to six weeks and sometimes longer (sometimes your Surgeon may recommend 8-12 weeks).
- These garments are beneficial for decreasing the amount of bruising and swelling. They also help loose skin to retract.
- While some plastic surgeons do not use garments, you can often acheive a better and quicker result by using them.
Downtime & Back to Work
- Most doctors recommend taking at least a week off work and your regular routine.
- However, those who undergo only a small amount of lipo may just need a few days.
- In order to prevent blood clots and discourage swelling, you should do some light walking, starting the day of surgery.
- Avoid both, heavy exercise and strenuous activities for two to three weeks.
Seeing Results of Lipo
- You’ll likely see some results immediately after surgery, but swelling and bruising are normal and can take weeks to resolve.
- In fact, some residual swelling may persist for several months.
- Most people see final results six months after surgery, but you may continue to see improvements for up to a year.
Healing & Scars after Liposuction
- Liposuction involves a series of small incisions less than a centimetre long.
- Just like scarring from any other type of injury, these incisions will go through a maturation process, likely over the course of a year.
- For the first few months, scars may be red and possibly raised and/or firm.
- As the scar matures, it becomes soft, pale, flat, and much less noticeable.
- Some people are prone to hypertrophic scars or keloids which are abnormal scars that become prominent.
- If you or a blood relative have a tendency for these types of scars, please inform your doctor prior to the procedure.
- Your plastic surgeon may suggest;
- Scar lightening cream
- Silicone scar sheets
- Laser treatments
- Or, injections to further minimise the appearance.
- Use sunscreen and avoid exposure to the sun for at least two months. UV rays can darken the appearance of scars.
Minimising Scars after Liposuction
It is important to remember that all surgical procedures leave scars, including ‘so-called’ scarless methods.
Experienced plastic surgeons are extremely careful about scar placement and minimisation, with surgical scars generally fading over time with most scars being barely visible after 12 months.
We will arrange weekly post-op appointments with our specialist nursing team after your procedure to ensure everything is healing well and to monitor your progress.
You will see your surgeon and/or nurse and/or dermal team about six to eight weeks later for a scar consultation and organise scar minimisation treatments.
The Coco Ruby dermal team conducts a series of follow-up scar treatments using a customised selection of Skin Needling, Healite II LED and massaging with oils, Fraxel Laser, V-Laser, Silicone strips & gels and Steroids can also help minimise scars. Ask the Coco Ruby Team!
Note – The length of your recovery period will depend on your procedure, health and lifestyle factors. Recovery times can vary from person to person – resting aids healing.
Please avoid subjecting your incision to abrasion or excessive stresses during the recovery period.
How much is Liposuction in Melbourne? Prices & Costs
Many Liposuction patients ask about the price and whether Medicare or Private Health Insurance will cover the procedure.
All procedures are individualized and customised to achieve the ideal results for you and your excess fat concerns. For this reason, it is hard to determine an exact price that would be valid for a liposuction patient without a consultation first.
During the consultation, Dr Briggs will talk to you about your wishes, possibilities, and expectations that you have from plastic surgery. You will also receive a specific quote for your operation after the consultation.
If you need more information, visit our pricing page to learn more about payment, approximate prices, payment methods, and more.
Funding Liposuction – Medicare, Payment Plans and Super
Some Liposuction procedures may be eligible for Medicare.
Purely cosmetic Liposuction procedures are usually NOT covered by Medicare or private health insurance so you must fund the cost of the surgery yourself.
Many patients ask about payment options and medical finance – You can learn more about payment options for funding your Liposuction procedure on our Funding Surgery page here.
Your super fund may also be able to help pay for your procedure in certain circumstances – visit the Super for Surgery page to find out about the early release of super on compassionate grounds.
How to find the best Liposuction surgeon in Melbourne
Your surgical results will depend on the surgeon you choose. Since liposuction is a major procedure, you’ll need a top liposuction plastic surgeon. A reputable liposuction surgeon has the following qualities:
- A Specialist Plastic Surgeon who is a Member of ASPS5 star online reviews from patients.
- Extensive experience in different types of liposuction.
- Patient Before and After Photos .
- Empathy and caring with recovery and aftercare.
- A great support team with long term follow up.
Risks and complications of Liposuction
All surgery incurs risks. Your Surgeon will make you aware of potential complications during your consultation. This includes; general anaesthesia, bleeding (Haematoma), infection, wound healing, deep vein thrombosis, scarring and numbness.
Always stay informed and healthy, do not smoke before or after your procedure and read and understand your risks.
What to Expect Before the Procedure?
Before starting liposuction, Dr Briggs will mark the areas of your body to undergo treatment. The markings consist of circles and lines.
Afterwards, your surgeon will take photographs for ‘before and after’ comparison purposes.
What to Expect During the Procedure?
What happens during the procedure will depend on the technique used for liposuction, the treated area and the expected result. Let’s have a look at a few of the most commonly used techniques;
It is the most common type of liposuction. The surgeon will inject a sterile solution into the treated area. The solution is made up of a mixture of salt and water, an anaesthetic to eliminate pain, and epinephrine. This mixture causes the marked area to swell and stiffen up afterwards.
Once the above process is done, your surgeon will create tiny cuts into your skin and insert a cannula under your skin. This cannula is used to suck out the fat and is connected to a vacuum. The body fluid will be replenished with an IV line during the process.
Ultrasound-Assisted Liposuction (UAL)
UAL is often used with traditional lipo. During UAL, the surgeon uses a metal rod that emits ultrasonic energy under your skin. This UAL will rupture the fat cells, which results in easier fat removal.
Laser-Assisted liposuction (LAL)
This technique involves a high-intensity laser light for breaking down rigid fat deposits. A surgeon will insert a laser fibre underneath your skin to emulsify fat deposits which are then removed with the help of a cannula.
Power-Assisted liposuction (PAL)
During PAL, a cannula that moves in a back and forth motion will be used. This rapid motion is extremely helpful for fat removal. It makes the entire process easier and quicker. Many surgeons use Micro-Aire Power-assisted Liposuction.
The actual procedure
The surgeon will begin the procedure by administering anaesthesia. Your surgeon will either opt for general anaesthesia or regional anaesthesia. The type of anaesthesia your surgeon picks will depend on the area undergoing treatment.
Once, this process is done, the surgeon will continue with the chosen technique (from the list above).
During the entire process, your heart rate, oxygen levels and blood pressure are under constant monitoring.
The procedure can last from a few to several hours depending on the extent of fat removal.
If the doctor has given you general anaesthesia, you will wake up in a recovery room where you’ll spend a night before going home.
What to Expect After the Procedure?
After the procedure, you will experience swelling in the treated region. Some patients also experience extreme bruising but it will fade away in a few weeks.
Your surgeon will give you pain relievers to eliminate pain. They will also give you antibiotics to minimize the risk of infection.
Some of your incisions may be left open to promote fluid drainage.
Your surgeon will also suggest and encourage you to wear a compression garment for a few weeks after the surgery to reduce swelling. They will also likely advise a rest period of 6 to 8 weeks.
Commonly combined /associated surgery
A Liposuction can be performed on its own or in combination with other surgical procedures such as abdominoplasty or a reduction mammoplasty in order to get a more natural result.
Liposuction can also be performed with a procedure on another part of the body – for example, breast and tummy surgery is commonly combined as a Mummy Makeover.
As a guide, it is best not to exceed a total of 4-6 hours of surgery and also to work on associated parts of the breast, body or face. See the BLOG on Combining Different Surgeries.
Frequently Asked Questions about Liposuction
How much does it cost to get liposuction on your stomach?
- The cost can be anywhere between $3,000 – 5,000 per hour.
- The price can vary from place to place and surgeon to surgeon.
- You will pay a higher price for a surgeon with experience and training.
- You will also pay more to have the procedure done in hospital.
- While a lower price my be apealing, it often means the doctor is less experienced and/or the procedure is done in a clinic back room.
How much weight can you lose with liposuction?
- It is important to realize that liposuction is not a weight-loss procedure; it is a body contouring procedure.
- However, you will most likely lose 1kg to 5kg as a result of liposuction depending on how much lipoaspirate your surgeon extracts.
Is liposuction a good idea?
- It is a good idea if you need it and you are the right candidate.
- Liposuction gets rid of rigid fat deposits which are difficult to get rid of through diet and exercise alone.
- It is unlikely that the fat cells will regrow in that area so the local fat loss is semi-permanent.
Does the fat come back after lipo?
- Once the fat is removed from a particular area through liposuction, it will not grow back as there are fewer fat cells in the treated area of your body as long as you maintain a steady weight.
How long will liposuction last?
- The results of liposuction are permanent as long as you maintain your weight and you continue living a healthy lifestyle.
Can you get liposuction on your belly?
- Of course, in fact, it is one of the most common treatment areas for liposuction.
What is the best surgery for belly fat?
- Liposuction is the best option for removing fat from your belly.
- However, if you have excess skin, you can opt for a tummy tuck.
How is liposuction done on stomach?
- The process is the same as it is with any other body part.
- The procedure steps will remain the same regardless of the targeted area.
How painful is liposuction?
- Liposuction is done under anesthesia, therefore you dont feel pain during the procedure.
- Although, you will feel some pain after liposuction, you can manage it with pain relievers.
Which is better liposuction or tummy tuck?
- No procedure is better than the other.
- These two procedures acheive different things;
- A tummy tuck removes excess skin.
- While liposuction gets rid of excess fat deposits.
Does Lipo leave scars?
- Liposuction will leave a few small scars, where incisions are made to extract fat.
- However, these scars will fade over time if you follow all the post-operative recovery instructions.
Can liposuction remove more than 5kg+ ?
- Liposuction is a body contouring procedure.
- Removing more than 5 kgs of fat through mega- liposuction is certainly not advisable and can be dangerous.
Does arm liposuction work?
- Yes, it works and is a possible solution for flabby arms.
- Some people genetically have more fat on their arms than the rest of their bodies and liposuction is one way to get rid of fat arms.
- For many patients, arm liposuction can remove fat but leaves excess skin which then requires an arm lift and skin excision to remedy.
Do I need a tummy tuck or just exercise?
- Everybody needs exercise for overall good health. However, if you have excess skin on your tummy, you simply cannot get rid of it by exercising and it will require a tummy tuck.
What can you not do after liposuction?
- Follow the specific instructions of your surgeon during the recovery period so you can return back to your normal lifestyle after you have healed.
How long after lipo can you see results?
- You can see the results, a day after liposuction.
- Although, the results continue to improve as the swelling goes down.
- Swelling can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks to completely recover.
Do you have to lose weight before getting liposuction?
- You should have a stable weight for at least one year.
- If you still plan to lose weight or your weight keeps on fluctuating, we suggest to stabilize your weight before getting liposuction done.
Your Consultation for Lipo Surgery
During your consultation, your surgeon will ask about your;
- General health
- Medical conditions
- Goals for the surgery
- And the specific areas where you want fat removed.
It is important that you discuss your goals fully with your surgeon so he can advise you as to whether the results will meet your expectations.
He may tell you that you could require more than one liposuction session to achieve your goals without unacceptable risk.
Your Surgeon may also recommend an alternative procedure such as an Abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) if the abdominal skin has become too loose. If you have loose skin and/or dimpling (cellulite) you are probably not an ideal candidate for liposuction. In fact, liposuction could make these conditions worse. In these situations, an Abdominoplasty, thigh lift or body lift may be a better procedure for you.
As part of your consultation, your surgeon will perform an exam, explain the details of the procedure and develop a specific plan for surgery and recovery with you.
In most cases, your Surgeon will require that you be relatively close to your ideal body weight but this is not an absolute requirement. Rather, it reflects the fact that there is a surgically safe limit to the volume of fat that a surgeon can remove at any time and a limitation on how much your skin will shrink after large-volume liposuction.
For these reasons, if you are contemplating liposuction as part of a more extensive diet and exercise program with the aim of losing 5 or more kilograms of weight, your Surgeon will recommend that you lose the weight before your surgery.
It is fair to say that the results of liposuction often motivate people to adopt better diets and more extensive exercise. However, you should not rely on making these changes after your procedure.
Do you Suffer from Diabetes?
If you are diabetic you may still have liposuction. In some cases, you may find that the removal of fat will reduce your insulin requirements. Please note, however, that this is not a treatment recognised by insurance companies.
Medical References for Further Reading
Dr Patrick Briggs Melbourne Plastic Surgeon – FRCS (Plas)
Specialist Plastic and Cosmetic Surgery Clinic in Melbourne
Dr Patrick Briggs is a Specialist Plastic and Cosmetic Surgeon. Both he and his team are dedicated to excellence in patient care and are committed to treating each and every patient with respect and privacy.
Not only does he offer high-quality results he also offers natural-looking plastic and cosmetic surgery results. Furthermore, he is experienced in Breast, Body and Face Surgery having performed over 4500 Surgeries in private practice.
How can we help?
Dr Briggs’ Patient Coordinators take pleasure in assisting you with any questions when considering a plastic surgery procedure. Please call the Hawthorn East clinic in Melbourne between 8 am – 6 pm on Weekdays.
Want more information about your Procedure?
What to Bring to Your Consultation
- If you like, please bring a friend or relative to help discuss the information and your choices.
- Take a lot of notes and thoroughly examine the documents your surgeon provides.
- You may need to undress so it’s a good idea to wear simple clothes.