What is Liposuction?

Suction-assisted lipectomy-also known as liposuction, fat suction, or suction lipectomy-is a technique to remove unwanted fat deposits from specific areas of the body, including the chin, neck, and cheeks; the upper arms and above the breasts; the abdomen, buttocks, hips, and thighs; and the knees, calves, and ankles. Liposuction is not a substitute for weight reduction, but a method of removing localized fat that doesn’t respond to dieting and exercise.


Improves body shape by removing exercise-resistant fat deposits with a tube and vacuum device. Performed using the tumescent technique, in which targeted fat cells are infused with saline containing solution with a local anesthetic before liposuction to reduce post-operative bruising and swelling.

Length of Surgery:

1 to 2 hours or longer.


Local, with sedation, or general.


Usually outpatient. Extensive procedures may require short inpatient stay.

Side Effects:

Temporary bruising, swelling, numbness, soreness. Temporary fluid drainage from incision sites.


Asymmetry. Rippling or bagginess of skin. Pigmentation changes. Fluid retention.


Back to work: 1 to 2 weeks. More strenuous activity: 4 to 6 weeks.

Duration of Results:

Permanent, with sensible diet and exercise.