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Is Liposuction Dangerous? Learn the Risks

Even minimally invasive surgical procedures carry some degree of risk. So just how risky is liposuction? Read on to learn the risks and recovery options.

 

Every year, millions of Americans seek to improve their appearance and health through diet, exercise, and other weight-management strategies. While counting calories and taking supplements are effective tools, sometimes, fat can hang around in stubborn areas. Even the most experienced fitness experts struggle to eliminate fat near the abdomen, arms, buttocks, neck, and hips.

To focus fat-loss on particular areas, many individuals turn to liposuction. Liposuction is a cosmetic procedure that removes fat cells from specific locations on the body. The procedure is permanent and generally results in a smoother contour for people who have elastic, healthy skin.

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Since liposuction can result in permanent, positive appearance changes for an individual, the procedure is quite popular. In fact, in 2017, 264,345 liposuction procedures were performed in the United States. However, many shy away from choosing liposuction due to perceived dangers.

 

What Are the Risks of Liposuction?

Like any surgery, liposuction does have associated risks. Though these risks aren’t necessarily higher than other forms of medical treatment, they should be carefully considered before an individual decides to have the procedure. The potential risks associated with liposuction include:

  • A bad reaction to anesthesia
  • Poor or prolonged wound healing
  • Infection
  • Changes in skin sensations
  • Swelling
  • Possible damage to deeper skin, muscle, or tissues, including organs
  • Bruising, discoloration, or rippled skin
  • Bleeding
  • Uneven results
  • Fluid accumulation under the skin

While these effects are clearly undesirable, they generally are rare and not often life-threatening. Some individuals are at greater risk for complications during the procedure, which is why doctors will rarely perform the cosmetic procedure on individuals who have conditions like diabetes, a weak immune system, blood flow conditions, and cardiac conditions. Medical malpractice is among the top five most common personal injury cases, so doctors are particularly careful to perform this elective procedure on only low-risk individuals.


What Does Liposuction Recovery Entail?

Recovering from liposuction requires less time than more invasive procedures, but can still take a few weeks. Expect bruising, swelling, and soreness for two or three weeks at least. You may have to wear compression garments, take pain medications, and take antibiotics to aid your recovery. The surgeon may also recommend resting at home for a few days before returning to work or exercise.

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Within a few weeks, the swelling will subside and you’ll be able to notice the results of your procedure. The area should look tighter, a bit smoother, and more toned overall. Though the recovery and risks may seem cumbersome, liposuction results are long-term. If you’re willing to handle recovery and know that you’re healthy enough to manage associated risks, the procedure can be a great way to see lasting results and cross your fitness finish line!

 

 

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