What is Liposuction?
We are proud to offer patients our extensive experience and expertise in liposuction, the single most popular cosmetic surgery procedure in the U.S. today. Liposuction sculpts the body by removing undesirable fat that has not responded to diet and exercise from the abdomen, waist, hips, buttocks, thighs, knees, upper arms, chin, cheeks, and neck.
Liposuction not only offers the opportunity to slim and contour chubby areas of the body; by removing the fat cells, it also ensures that these areas will not accumulate fatty deposits in the future. Dr. Sobel offers liposuction under local anesthesia in our office in New York City.
Common areas treated:
- Outer & Inner Thighs
- Upper Arms
- For men, the most popular area is the abdomen/waist, targeting “love handles.”
How much weight can you lose with liposuction?
Dr. Sobel stresses to his patients from around the city that liposuction is not a weight-loss procedure — it is a body-contouring procedure. Liposuction is meant to remove stubborn pockets of unwanted fat that accumulate in areas where it is impervious to your efforts to get rid of it. The best patients for liposuction, those who enjoy the best body sculpting, are those who are at their ideal weight. Dr. Sobel can then remove the pockets of fat and slim the contour of the area.
Patients will lose between two and five pounds of fat with liposuction. You may have heard otherwise but removing too much fat in a single procedure is dangerous.
If you’re interested in weight-loss surgery, that’s bariatric surgery.
The Ideal Candidate for Liposuction?
Liposuction is NOT a weight-loss panacea. Instead, it is meant to remove pockets of fat that do not respond to diet and exercise. A candidate should be at or near his or her ideal body weight and needs to have realistic expectations from the procedure. The patient also needs to be free of any chronic conditions.
How to Prepare for Liposuction
In most cases, Dr. Sobel requires that his patients receive medical clearance and blood tests from their primary doctor. This is to ensure there are no medical conditions or medications that would interfere with the procedure, such as diabetes or heart conditions. He requires his patients to take Vitamin C and K for 10 days prior to the procedure to prevent bruising, along with an antibiotic for five days. Since the liposuction is performed using only local anesthesia, the patient can have a light breakfast the morning of the procedure and a snack while they are resting before being sent home.
Will I be sedated during my liposuction?
Liposuction has come a long way since its debut in the U.S. back in the 1980s. Back then, the procedure involved aggressive movements of the cannula to break loose and suction away the fat cells. This created a good deal of tissue trauma and subsequent bruising that could linger for months. Because of this, patients had to be under general anesthesia.
Thanks to the tumescent approach, which Dr. Sobel has been using for 35 years, our patients only need sedation prior to the procedure. That’s because part of the tumescent solution is Lidocaine, in addition to saline water and epinephrine. When Dr. Sobel injects the tumescent solution, this provides the local anesthetic necessary to keep you comfortable.
The liposuction procedure begins with the injection of a solution composed of saline (saltwater), a local anesthetic called lidocaine, and a small amount of adrenaline to decrease bruising and bleeding. This is known as either the tumescent or super-wet technique, depending on the ratio of the fluid to the fatty tissue being removed.
Once this solution has been introduced into the area planned for liposuction treatment, the doctor proceeds with one of two different methods of liposuction:
- Suction-assisted lipectomy (SAL)
- Ultrasonic-assisted lipectomy (UAL)
In both methods, a tiny incision is made in as inconspicuous a place as possible. In SAL, a cannula (small tube) is inserted and moved back and forth beneath the skin, breaking up the fat layer and suctioning it out. In UAL, ultrasonic energy is used to liquefy the fat before it is suctioned out with a cannula. The liposuction procedure may last from one to four hours, depending on the amount of fat being removed.
In 1986 Dr. Sobel was one of the first physicians to perform liposuction using the tumescent technique purely under local anesthesia. According to the American Society of Dermatologic Surgery, tumescent liposuction enables a surgeon, using local anesthesia, to safely and successfully remove fat deposits with relatively little patient discomfort, virtually no complications, and excellent cosmetic results.
Dr. Sobel performs power-assisted liposuction in his fully AAAHC-accredited, state of the art operating room that is part of his luxurious 4,000 square foot Park Avenue Surgical Center. Furthermore, using local sedation avoids many of the potentially serious risks posed by general anesthesia.
Where does Dr. Sobel perform his liposuction procedures?
Rather than having to go to an area hospital for these procedures, our Sobel Skin patients can have their liposuction performed in our state-of-the-art operating room in our Park Avenue facility. Our operating room is fully AAAHC accredited and is very comfortable for our patients. Our patients love coming here rather than traipsing to an unfriendly hospital environment for these outpatient procedures.
What is Tumescent Liposuction?
Tumescent Liposuction has eliminated the need for general anesthesia when performing liposuction. A large amount of anesthetic solution containing diluted lidocaine and epinephrine is injected into the fatty tissue prior to the cannula being inserted to remove the pockets of fat.
How Long After Liposuction Do You See Results?
You can expect a quick and easy recovery after visiting one of the best doctors for liposuction in NYC. There may be bruising for a few days but you can resume normal activity in one or two days. Results are visible immediately, and improvement often continues as swelling subsides during the first six weeks. We make sure that scars from the liposuction cannula insertion point are small and inconspicuous.
Skin with good elasticity will look smooth and even after liposuction. Liposuction is not a cure for cellulite, but many of Dr. Sobel’s patients notice some improvement after liposuction.
Before and after results
Liposuction Recovery Process
Once the local anesthesia wears off, you will experience some soreness at the liposuction sites for two to three days. Usually, Extra Strength Tylenol is sufficient, although you may receive prescription pain medication if you feel it is needed. Normally, you will only need to rest one day before returning to your normal activities.
Can I combine other procedures with my liposuction?
Because tumescent liposuction with Dr. Sobel is so much less aggressive and traumatic to the body, it’s easy to combine it with just about any of the other treatments we offer at Sobel Skin.
For instance, for women, Dr. Sobel could remove fat from your flanks, and you could also have sclerotherapy to remove some spider veins on your legs in the same visit. That would get you ready for weekends at the shore.
If you’re a guy, you could have Dr. Sobel slim your abdomen and you could have laser hair removal done on your back.
Any of our laser skin resurfacing treatments make good complements to liposuction, as you can allow a couple of days for the skin to recover while you are laying low to allow the soreness from your liposuction to resolve.
Really, the sky’s the limit here. During your consultation with Dr. Sobel, tell him you’re interested in combining the procedure with another treatment and you can discuss your options.
Why Are Results so Much Better with Local Anesthesia?
Dr. Sobel believes that you cannot know the end result when the patient is laying down. When you stand people up, gravity plays a role. It is easier to check whether the effect is symmetrical when the patient is standing up. The areas can be remarked and corrections can be made with local anesthesia when the patient is lying down again.
Are Liposuction Results Permanent?
The fat cells that are removed with liposuction are permanently removed. As long as you maintain your same weight nothing will change. If you gain more than five or 10 pounds you may gain fat in other areas that have not been treated, but treated areas will resist fat gain.
What are the Side Effects of Liposuction?
- Temporary swelling, bruising, soreness, and numbness in and around the treated areas.
- Irritation and minor scarring around the incision sites where the cannulas were inserted.
- Baggy or rippling skin. The skin will usually tighten and retract after a few months.
What Our Patients Have to Say
“Very professional office from the doctor, to nurses, to the front desk. Dr. Sobel takes the time to explain what he recommends for you. His staff is great and the front desk squeezes you in for appointments or follow-ups. The facialist is highly experienced and friendly.” -Julie A.
What Type of Bandages Do You Have to Wear?
Depending on the area treated, you will wear a type of compression garment similar to Spanx. It can be laundered like any other piece of clothing. You will wear the compression garment for two to three weeks to prevent bruising and help the skin adhere to its new contour.
How Much on Average Does Liposuction Cost?
The cost is determined by the number of areas that are to be treated. The fee for a small area such as the neck would be $2,500 and larger areas would be $4000 and up. If you do multiple areas in one day Dr. Sobel will make accommodations for the fees.
What Qualifications Should I Look for in a Physician to Perform Liposuction?
You should look for a Board Certified Cosmetic Surgeon who specializes in cosmetic procedures. The procedure must also be performed in an Accredited Surgical Facility only. Dr. Sobel’s surgical center is AAAHC accredited.