Serving Metro Detroit & Michigan For Over 30 Years
At Chau Plastic Surgery. we strive to provide you with the best results. We will take the time to discuss all the options available to you so you can make an informed decision that best fits with your goals.
What is Liposuction?
Liposuction is a cosmetic procedure that suctions fat from specific areas of the body. Technically called “suction-assisted lipectomy”, “lipoplasty”, or liposculpture it is not intended to be a form of weight loss. Rather, it is designed to remove fat from certain “problem” areas that do not respond to dieting or exercising. These areas may be your midsection, back, thighs, arms, chin, or any other small area. Liposuction is a versatile elective procedure that allows the surgeon to help reshape the patient’s body. At Chau Plastic Surgery, we use an ultrasound-based technology called VASER as an added step to the traditional liposuction.
VASER Lipo vs. Laser Lipo vs. Traditional Lipo
VASER liposelection uses ultrasonic technology that is tissue-selective. That means the ultrasonic waves are more selective and targeted to fat cells than other surrounding types of cells. The ultrasound energy is delivered through a wand that is placed under the skin and used to treat the fat cells and helps to separate them into smaller fat molecules. This helps facilitate the removal of fat from the area while inflicting minimal effects on other surrounding tissues, such as nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissue. VASER Liposuction allows you, the patient, to expect maximum results from our skilled surgeons at Chau Plastic Surgery, versus other types of liposuction.
Laser liposuction is available in different brands, but one of the most well known brands is SmartLipo. The technology of laser use in liposuction is based on the fact that lasers create heat and heat can break down fat cells as does the ultrasound. However, the big difference between the two is that ultrasound targets water molecules that are found in fat cells, thus making the fat cells the primary target. Lasers have been used in many other forms of technology and there are many types of lasers. The lasers used in liposuction target blood cells. In order for the laser to also have an effect on the fat cells, the heat energy on the laser machine has to be much higher than the energy needed using ultrasound. This puts the blood vessels, skin and surround structures at higher risk for damage and burns, when compared to use of ultrasound. The ultrasound can deliver the same effect with less energy and therefore less potential injury to surrounding tissues.
Is Liposuction Right For Me?
Liposuction is not suitable for everyone. There are certain factors such as your medical or medication history that may make you automatically ineligible for this surgical treatment.
If you are significantly overweight or obese, you are probably not a good candidate for liposuction as there are limitations to the amount of fat that can be removed through a liposuction procedure. If a significant amount of fat is removed it may result in excess, hanging skin. Although a combination procedure to remove any excess skin can sometimes be performed at the same time or at a later date, such as a tummy tuck, the only way to tell if liposuction is a realistic option for you is to consult with our board certified plastic surgeons.
Post Liposuction Results & Recovery
Going into a liposuction procedure, you should not expect to lose large amount of weight. Liposuction is not a weight-loss procedure. Instead, liposuction should be viewed as a body sculpting procedure that allows the surgeon to target “stubborn” areas of fat that cannot be lost and sculpt you a more fit physique. It is also very important to incorporate a healthy diet and exercise plan to achieve and maintain optimum results.
After a liposuction procedure, you should expect to have some bruising and swelling to the treated areas. You will be fitted for a compression garment to cover your treatment areas. This garment is like a silky body suit that helps in the healing process and assist in controlling the swelling. This garment/bodysuit also help compress your skin to fit your new body contours.
It may take anywhere from a few weeks to several months for the swelling to go away. As the swelling disappears, however, your new body shape and contours will become even more and more apparent.
You may also be required to take prescription medications to reduce the chances of infections and aid in healing. Scheduling multiple follow-up visits may also be necessary.
The Chau Plastic Surgery Difference
Dr. Bruce Chau and Dr. Barak Tanzman are true artisans when it comes to plastic surgery. Years of expertise, training, and educational leadership have earned them high ratings not only from their patients but also from their peers in the medical community.
Dr. Chau and Dr. Tanzman assess each patient on a case-by-case basis, so the only way to know if a liposuction procedure is right for you is to schedule a consultation today!
Metro Detroit Liposuction Specialists
Liposuction is a procedure designed to sculpt the body by addressing fat deposits in the areas that are resistant to exercise and diet. The plastic surgeons at Chau Plastic Surgery specialize in body sculpting using a variety of these innovative techniques. Using these innovative procedures, the surgeons can slim and shape the problem areas of the body to provide the patient with a beautifully contoured figure. People with localized fat deposits who reside in the Metro Detroit Area, as well as individuals who plan to visit the area, might be considered good candidates for this innovative Liposuction procedure.
What is a Traditional Detroit Liposuction Procedure?
Other terms that are used when referring to a traditional Liposuction procedure are lipoplasty and suction-assisted lipectomy. The term liposculpture is often used when referring to ultrasound-assisted Liposuction procedures.
During a lipoplasty procedure, the plastic surgeon injects tumescent fluid into the areas being treated. This fluid breaks up the fat, which makes it easier to remove. After injecting the fluid, the incisions are created. Then, using a thin, hollow tube (i.e., a cannula) and a specially designed vacuum, the fat deposits are removed via suction.
Can a Lipoplasty Procedure Be Used to Replace a Regular Exercise Regimen and Healthy Diet?
A Liposuction procedure is not meant to replace either of these, instead, a lipectomy is designed to sculpt and contour a patient’s body through the removal of excess fat in problem areas.
Can a Liposuction Procedure Be Used for Weight Loss?
This procedure is not designed to be used for weight loss, but instead, for body-sculpting. The experienced surgeon targets areas of the body that are resistant to diet and exercise. By removing this stubborn fat, the patient enjoys a more fit physique.
Some of the problem areas that can be addressed with Liposuction include the:
Lipoplasty can also be used to address fat deposits in other areas of the body. During the initial consultation, patients can ask about the specific area they would like addressed.
A Combination Liposuction Procedure at Chau Plastic Surgery in Detroit
To ensure patients receive the best results possible, every patient who has a traditional Liposuction procedure also has an ultrasound-assisted Liposuction procedure.
How Does the Ultrasound-Assisted Procedure Work?
The ultrasound-assisted procedure uses vibration amplification of sound energy at resonance to liquefy the fat. Once liquefied, it can easily be removed via suction. The ultrasound-assisted procedure is frequently referred to by its acronym VASER.
The VASERSmooth Procedure Can Address Cellulite
The VASERSmooth procedure is also available at Chau Plastic Surgery. This procedure is designed for cellulite reduction.
Liposuction procedures are performed at the hospital, however, when small areas requiring very little fat reduction are targeted, the in-office, non-invasive Sculpture machine is used.
Who is a Good Candidate for Liposuction in the Metro Detroit Area?
Individuals who are considering lipoplasty need to reflect on what they would like to achieve with this procedure: Only then can the plastic surgeons at Chau Plastic Surgery determine if this procedure will provide the individual with the results he or she desires.
Who is Not Considered a Good Candidate for a Detroit Lipoplasty Procedure?
This procedure is not an option for everyone. Certain factors can make an individual ineligible for lipoplasty procedures. Some of these factors include specifics related to the patient’s medication or medical history.
Individuals who are more than 30 pounds over their ideal weight are not good candidates for a lipoplasty. Furthermore, since there are limitations related to the amount of fat that can be removed during a Liposuction procedure, the plastic surgeons at Chau Plastic Surgery prefer their lipoplasty patients be as close to their ideal weight as possible.
Why Are There Limits Placed on Fat Removal During a Lipoplasty Procedure?
Removing a substantial amount of fat can result in excess skin. This excess skin hangs down over the area that is beneath it. The continuous skin-on-skin contact causes the area to sweat. Due to this moisture, the frictional forces between these two areas increases, resulting in skin irritation (i.e., a rash). The itchy rash that develops between skin folds is referred to as intertrigo. Intertrigo worsens with humidity and heat. In addition, random sores can develop in these areas.
For example, if an individual has lost a significant amount of weight, he or she may have skin hanging down from the lower abdomen that is resting on the area just beneath it. The continuous contact between these areas can result in the development of intertrigo. These individuals may be considered good candidates for a lipoabdominoplasty.
During a lipoabdominoplasty, Liposuction is used to remove excess fat deposits in the abdomen and a tummy tuck is performed directly thereafter.
Individuals who have lost a substantial amount of weight (100 pounds or more) might be considered good candidates for a belt lipectomy (aka 360-degree tummy tuck). With a belt lipectomy, the patient receives a tummy tuck and a lower body lift. During this plastic surgery procedure, an incision is created just above the pelvic bone. This incision continues around the posterior waistline to just above the upper buttock.
At Chau Plastic Surgery near Detroit, board-certified plastic surgeons perform lipoplasty procedures as well as tummy tucks and belt lipectomy procedures.
Personalized Lipoplasty Treatment Plans in the Metro Detroit Area
Each patient is unique. For this reason, every patient receives a personalized treatment plan. To ensure the patient receives optimal results, it is vital that every aspect of the procedure is considered and the patient’s desires are accounted for as the surgeon creates his or her personalized treatment plan. The board-certified surgeons at Chau Plastic Surgery have been creating custom-designed treatment plans and performing lipoplasty procedures for years.
Areas Frequently Addressed with Liposuction
Men and women throughout the Metro Detroit Area choose to have a lipoplasty procedure to eliminate pockets of fat that remain even after the implementation of a healthy diet and regular exercise regimen.
Some of the most common areas addressed with lipoplasty include:
- Bra Fat – Bra rolls are difficult to address with traditional methods, however, during a lipoplasty procedure, these rolls can be eliminated.
- The Back and Flanks – During the weight loss process, the flanks (i.e., love handles) are typically one of the last areas to be eliminated. However, an experienced surgeon can use lipoplasty to remove the fat that has accumulated in these areas, providing the patient with a slimmer appearance.
- The Chin – A chin lipoplasty can be used to visually improve the contours of the jaw and the chin, without leaving any noticeable scarring behind. To determine if an individual is a good candidate for this procedure, during the initial consultation the surgeon examines the patient’s upper neck and chin.
- The Upper Arms – This procedure is frequently performed for women who feel self-conscious about having larger upper arms.
- The Outer Thigh – Once fat accumulates in the outer thighs, a woman may have difficulty finding pants, skirts and jeans that fit her comfortably. Many women in the Metro Detroit Area choose to have this fat removed with a lipoplasty procedure.
- The Inner Thigh – Another common problem area for men and women is the inner thigh. When excess fat deposits accumulate on the inner thighs, they may rub against one another as the individual walks. This friction can lead to irritation and discomfort. For men, the continuous friction while walking can also cause hair loss on the inner-side of the upper thighs. With certain kinds of clothing (e.g., wool, etc.), this inner thigh rubbing can also create an unappealing sound.
Benefits that many patients experience following their Liposuction procedure include:
- Improved self-confidence levels.
- An increase in self-esteem.
- A smaller waistline.
- A beautifully contoured, hourglass body shape.
- A body that appears balanced and proportional.
- The muffin top is eliminated.
- The ability to find clothing that fits more comfortably and looks better than it would have before the lipoplasty procedure.
The first step in the process of attaining the physical characteristics an individual desires is scheduling an initial consultation with one of the experienced surgeons at Chau Plastic Surgery.
What to Expect During an Initial Consultation for a Lipoplasty Procedure
The only way to find out if a lipoplasty procedure is an individual’s best option is with an initial consultation.
During this consultation, patients need to be able to express what they would like to accomplish with a lipoplasty procedure.
The topics discussed during this appointment include the individual’s aesthetic goals, lifestyle and any concerns he or she has related to the lipoplasty procedure. In addition, the patient’s medical history, current medications, herbal supplements and vitamin usage are collected.
VASER Liposuction (aka Liposculpting): An Innovative Fat Cell Removal Technique Using Ultrasonic Technology
The vibration amplification of sound energy at resonance Liposuction procedure uses tissue-selective ultrasonic technology to target fat cells. The ability of these ultrasonic waves to select and target fat cells reduces the likelihood that other cells in the surrounding area will sustain damage.
While performing a liposculpting procedure, a wand is used to deliver the ultrasound energy into the treatment area. This wand is placed directly beneath the skin and the ultrasound energy that it emits separates the fat cells into smaller molecules. By reducing their size, the surgeon can safely remove these fat cells with minimal damage to the surrounding tissues (e.g., nerves, connective tissue and blood vessels).
Liposculpting provides patients with the best results possible, which is why every patient who has a traditional lipoplasty procedure also receives a liposculpting treatment.
A Liposuction Procedure in the Metro Detroit Area
The overall purpose of this procedure is to improve the patient’s body contours.
This surgery can last up to two hours, however, if multiple areas are being treated, the procedure may take longer.
During a lipoplasty procedure, patients receive anesthesia consisting of local anesthesia with intravenous (IV) sedation, which is also referred to as twilight sedation, conscious sedation and monitored anesthesia care (MAC).
Lipoplasty procedures are performed on an outpatient basis. However, since patients receive anesthesia via IV sedation during a lipoplasty procedure, they are not permitted to drive themselves home. For this reason, when patients arrive for their procedure, they must have their own driver with them.
It is important to note:
For patient safety purposes, the plastic surgeons at Chau Plastic Surgery will not permit patients who have just had anesthesia or sedation to use public transportation or a for-hire passenger service like Uber. Therefore, any patient who arrives at the hospital for a surgical procedure without a licensed driver will need to reschedule his or her procedure.
To ensure each patient enjoys optimal results, once the traditional lipoplasty is complete a VASERShape treatment is performed.
The Benefits of a VASERShape Treatment Following Lipoplasty
VASERShape is a non-invasive treatment that helps release the excess fluid within the fat cells. As the VASERShape treatment and manual massage are performed the fluid is moved toward the lymphatic system, which is where it will be disposed of.
In addition, the heat produced during a VASERShape treatment increases collagen production, which helps smooth, tone and tighten the skin.
This treatment also optimizes the healing process and aids in recovery.
Recovering from a Lipoplasty Procedure in the Metro Detroit Area
Directly following surgery, the patient receives a compression garment/bodysuit. This bodysuit assists with the healing process by controlling inflammation and compressing the skin to maintain the new body shape that was created during the Liposuction procedure.
Before leaving the hospital, patients may be given a prescription for medications. These medications are designed to reduce the likelihood of infection and assist with the healing process.
Following a lipoplasty procedure, patients will have some bruising and inflammation in the areas that were treated.
Swelling can last from just a few weeks to several months. As the inflammation subsides, the changes made to the patient’s body contours and shape become increasingly evident.
Spending time in the sun can increase inflammation, therefore, patients need to avoid spending time in the sun for at least six weeks after surgery.
Some patients require several follow-up visits.
To lighten the resulting scars, patients need to keep their scars covered or apply sunblock with a strength of SPF 30 or higher to the scars whenever they will be exposed to UV light (i.e., the sun and tanning beds): This practice must continue for no less than 18 months post op.
Following a lipoplasty procedure, most patients need about a week off work or school.
After surgery, strenuous activity must be avoided for two to four weeks.
As long as the patient abides by the recommendations his or her Liposuction surgeon provides, the scars that result from a lipoplasty procedure should fade substantially within several months to a year of surgery.
By following the post-op instructions they received before leaving the hospital, patients can increase their likelihood of experiencing a quick, safe and uneventful recovery.
Since every patient is unique, the length of time the results attained during a lipoplasty procedure will last varies from one patient to the next.
There are some issues that negatively affect the results achieved with this procedure. These issues include weight changes, aging and gravity.
VASER-Assisted High-Definition Liposuction
Another procedure at Chau Plastic Surgery in the Metro Detroit Area that uses ultrasound technology for contouring purposes is the minimally-invasive VASER-Assisted High-Definition Liposculpting procedure. With this innovative procedure, the plastic surgeons can contour a single area or they can use this procedure for full-body contouring.
The VASER-Assisted High-Definition Liposculpting procedure allows the plastic surgeons at Chau Plastic Surgery to provide the patient with more precise contouring than can be accomplished with a traditional Liposuction. The VASER-Assisted High-Definition Liposculpting procedure is clinically proven to provide patients with smooth, even results.
Potential Risks and Complications Associated with Liposuction
Every surgical procedure involves some risk and cosmetic surgery is no exception. As with other major surgical procedures, a negative reaction to the anesthesia and excess bleeding are possible.
The possible complications that are specifically linked to the lipoplasty procedure include:
- Seroma development – A seroma is a pocket of fluid beneath the skin. Although these are temporary, they can easily be drained by one of the plastic surgeons at Chau Plastic Surgery.
- Spotty looking skin – This change takes place when the cannula causes damage beneath the skin. This complication typically occurs when an inexperienced surgeon uses the cannula incorrectly.
- An internal puncture – This complication is extremely rare. This complication occurs when the cannula is inserted too deeply, resulting in a punctured internal organ. If this happens, emergency surgical repair may be required.
- Numbness and nerve irritation – Some patients experience temporary numbness in the treated area. Sometimes this numbing-sensation becomes permanent. Another potential complication is temporary nerve irritation.
- Lidocaine toxicity – This anesthetic is frequently administered with the tumescent fluid that is used to break up the fat during a Liposuction procedure. Lidocaine is used to manage pain and, while this anesthetic is generally safe, there are rare instances when lidocaine toxicity occurs resulting in serious central nervous system and heart problems.
- Infection – Although skin infections are rare, should one develop, patients need to contact Chau Plastic Surgery as soon as possible because the development of a severe skin infection could be life-threatening.
- Disproportionate contouring results – Following a Liposuction procedure, a patient may notice that his or her skin appears wavy, bumpy or shrunken. These irregularities occur due to poor skin elasticity, uneven fat removal and unusual healing. Since these changes can be permanent, lipoplasty patients need to have their procedure performed by an experienced plastic surgeon.
- Heart, lung and kidney problems – The shifts that occur in the fluid levels as they are being injected and then suctioned out can cause life-threatening lung, heart and kidney problems.
- A fat embolism – If pieces of the loosened fat break away, they may travel to the patient’s brain or become trapped within a blood vessel. Fat embolisms are medical emergencies.
The likelihood of a complication increases when multiple procedures are being performed during the same surgical session as well as when larger surfaces of the body are being treated with lipoplasty. Furthermore, choosing an inexperienced surgeon to perform a lipoplasty procedure greatly increases the risk of complications.
During the patient’s initial consultation at Chau Plastic Surgery, the surgeon will discuss the risks and complications associated with this procedure and how they relate to the specific patient.
How Much Will a Liposuction Treatment Near Detroit Cost?
Since every patient is unique, the only way to find out how much an individual’s treatment would cost is with an initial consultation. Call (248) 799-2880 to schedule your initial consultation with an experienced surgeon at Chau Plastic Surgery today.
Can Health Insurance Be Billed for a Liposuction Procedure?
No, since lipoplasty is an elective procedure that is designed to improve one’s appearance, insurance companies will not pay for it.
Is SmartLipo Available at Chau Plastic Surgery?
Chau Plastic Surgery does not offer SmartLipo to patients because this procedure is laser based and lasers are not an effective method for the removal of fat cells because instead of removing fat cells, laser treatments destroy them. In addition, during a SmartLipo treatment the laser can potentially burn the patient.
At Chau Plastic Surgery, surgeons prefer to use the ultrasound-based VASER Liposuction techniques instead of SmartLipo because ultrasound does not destroy the fat cells, therefore, the risk of the patient suffering a burn is eliminated. Furthermore, the ultrasound energy that is emitted during a liposculpture procedure can help encourage collagen production and tighten the skin.
The Chau Plastic Surgery Difference
The board-certified surgeons at Chau Plastic Surgery have years of training, expertise and educational leadership to draw from while they create each patient’s unique treatment plan. The dedication, artistic vision and caring demeanor of the plastic surgeons at Chau Plastic Surgery has earned them high ratings from their patients and their peers.
Each surgeon’s skill, artistic ability and compassionate manner has led to men and women throughout the Metro Detroit Area choosing Chau Plastic Surgery for their body-contouring and plastic surgery needs.
To make an appointment at Chau Plastic Surgery, please call (248) 799-2880 or click here to use the online request form. Chau Plastic Surgery is in Berkley, Michigan. The office address is 27901 Woodward Ave, Ste 100.