Sarasota / Bradenton Liposuction Specialist – Dr. Kreithen

The best Sarasota liposuction candidates are normal-weight people with firm, elastic skin who have pockets of excess fat in certain areas. You should be physically healthy, psychologically stable and realistic in your expectations. Your age is not a major consideration; however, older patients may have diminished skin elasticity and may not achieve the same results as younger patients with tighter skin. Smokers are most likely to experience poor healing of the skin; therefore, smokers must quit at least one month prior to surgery and refrain from smoking at least one month after the surgery.

There is a misconception that liposuction can be used to help you lose a lot of weight. Actually you are an ideal candidate for liposuction if you are at your ideal weight with areas of fat deposits that still can not be reduced. In fact, Dr. Kreithen has performed liposuction on many personal trainers who found liposuction necessary to achieve their desired contour despite hours in the gym.

Liposuction carries greater risk for individuals with medical problems such as diabetes, significant heart or lung disease, poor blood circulation, or those who have recently had surgery near the area to be contoured.

Liposuction in Sarasota: Is It for Me?

Liposuction improves body shape by removing exercise-resistant fat deposits with a special tube and surgical vacuum device. Liposuction can also be performed using the tumescent technique. During this procedure, the targeted fat cells are infused with saline solution and a local anesthetic before liposuction to reduce post-operative bruising and swelling. Common areas for liposuction include the chin, cheeks, neck, upper arms, chest, abdomen, buttocks, hips, thighs, knees, calves and ankles.

Length: 1 to 2 hours or more.

Anesthesia: Local, epidural, or general.

In/Outpatient: Usually outpatient. Extensive procedures may require short inpatient stay.

Side Effects: Temporary bruising, swelling, numbness, soreness, burning sensation. Tumescent: Temporary fluid drainage from incision sites.

Risks: Asymmetry. Rippling or bagginess of skin. Pigmentation changes. Skin injury. Fluid retention. Excessive fluid loss leading to shock. Infection.

Recovery: Back to work: 1 to 2 weeks. More strenuous activity: 2 to 4 weeks. Full recovery from swelling and bruising: 1 to 6 months or more.

Duration of Results: Permanent, with sensible diet and exercise.

Planning Your Surgery

During your initial consultation, Dr. Kreithen will evaluate your health, determine where your fat deposits lie and assess the condition of your skin. He will explain the body-contouring methods that will be most appropriate for you. For example, if you believe you want liposuction in the abdominal area, you may learn that tummy tuck surgery may more effectively meet your goals. You might also learn that the best treatment for you is a combination of liposuction and tummy tuck in Sarasota.

Dr. Kreithen will discuss the specifics of the procedure with you, as well as the benefits and risks in depth.

At the completion of your consultation, you will meet with our patient coordinator. You will be given an estimate of the cost of your procedure, and have the option to schedule your procedure if you so choose. You are also encouraged to bring your spouse, significant other, family member, or a friend to your consultation. Dr. Kreithen realizes the importance of your decision, and will be happy to meet with you a second time to discuss the surgery.

Getting the Answers You Need

Potential Sarasota / Bradenton liposuction patients often feel a bit overwhelmed by the number of options and techniques being promoted today. When deciding which treatment is right for you, Dr. Kreithen will consider effectiveness, safety, cost and appropriateness. This is called surgical judgment, a skill that is developed through surgical training and experience. Dr. Kreithen also uses this judgment to prevent complications, handle unexpected occurrences during surgery and treat complications when they occur.

Preparing for Your Surgery

Dr. Kreithen will give you specific instructions on how to prepare for surgery, including guidelines on eating and drinking, smoking, and taking or avoiding vitamins, herbals, iron tablets and certain medications. If you develop a cold or an infection of any kind, especially a skin infection, your surgery may have to be postponed.

Also, while you are making preparations, be sure to arrange for someone to drive you home after the procedure and, if needed, to help you at home for a day or two.

Where Your Surgery Will be Performed

Liposuction will most likely be performed at our new state-of-the-art Holcomb – Kreithen Plastic Surgery Medical Center operating room, usually as a outpatient procedure. However, if a large volume of fat will be removed, or if the liposuction is being performed in conjunction with other procedures, an overnight stay in the hospital may be required.

Anesthesia for Liposuction

Various types of anesthesia can be used for liposuction procedures. Dr. Kreithen will discuss the type of anesthesia that provides the safest and most effective level of comfort for your surgery.

If only a small amount of fat and a limited number of body sites are involved, liposuction can be performed under local anesthesia, which numbs only the affected areas. However, if you prefer, the local is usually used along with intravenous sedation to keep you more relaxed during the procedure. Regional anesthesia can be a good choice for more extensive procedures. One type of regional anesthesia is the epidural block, the same type of anesthesia commonly used in childbirth.

However, some of our liposuction Sarasota patients prefer general anesthesia, particularly if a large volume of fat is being removed. If this is the case, a nurse anesthetist or anesthesiologist will be called in to make sure you are completely asleep during the procedure.

The Surgery

The time required to perform liposuction may vary considerably, depending on the size of the area, the amount of fat being removed, the type of anesthesia and the technique used. There are several liposuction techniques that can be used to improve the ease of the procedure and to enhance outcome.

Liposuction is a procedure in which localized deposits of fat are removed to recontour one or more areas of the body. Through a tiny incision, a narrow tube or cannula is inserted and used to vacuum the fat layer that lies deep beneath the skin. The cannula is pushed, and then pulled, through the fat layer, breaking up the fat cells and suctioning them out. The suction action is provided by a vacuum pump or a large syringe, depending on the surgeon's preference. If many sites are being treated, Dr. Kreithen will then move on to the next area, working to keep the incisions as inconspicuous as possible.

Since fluid is lost along with the fat, it's crucial that this fluid be replaced during the procedure to prevent shock. For this reason, patients need to be carefully monitored and receive intravenous fluids during and immediately after surgery.

Technique Variations

The basic technique of liposuction, as described above, is used in all patients undergoing this procedure. However, as the procedure has been developed and refined, several variations have been introduced.

Fluid injection, a technique in which a medicated solution is injected into fatty areas before the fat is removed, is commonly used by plastic surgeons today. The fluid -- a mixture of intravenous salt solution, lidocaine (a local anesthetic) and epinephrine (a drug that contracts blood vessels) -- helps the fat be removed more easily, reduces blood loss and provides anesthesia during and after surgery. Fluid injection also helps to reduce the amount of bruising after surgery.

The amount of fluid that is injected varies depending on the preference of the surgeon. Large volumes of fluid -- sometimes as much as three times the amount of fat to be removed -- are injected in the tumescent technique. Tumescent liposuction, typically performed on patients who need only a local anesthetic, usually takes significantly longer than traditional liposuction (sometimes as long as 4 to 5 hours). However, because the injected fluid contains an adequate amount of anesthetic, additional anesthesia may not be necessary. The name of this technique refers to the swollen and firm or "tumesced" state of the fatty tissues when they are filled with solution.

The super-wet technique, preferred by Dr. Kreithen, is similar to the tumescent technique, except that lesser amounts of fluid are used. Usually the amount of fluid injected is equal to the amount of fat to be removed. This technique often requires IV sedation or general anesthesia and typically takes one to two hours of surgery time.

All Surgery Carries Some Uncertainty and Risk

Liposuction is normally safe, as long as patients are carefully selected, the operating facility is properly equipped and the physician is adequately trained.

As a foremost Sarasota cosmetic surgeon, Dr. Kreithen has advanced surgical skills to perform procedures that involve the removal of a large amount of fat (up to 5 liters, or 5,000 ccs). Ask him about his other patients who have had similar procedures and about their results. Please take into account that more extensive liposuction procedures require attentive aftercare.

However, it's important to keep in mind that even though a well-trained surgeon and a state-of-the art facility can improve your chance of having a good result, there are no guarantees. Though they are rare, complications can and do occur. Risks increase if a greater number of areas are treated at the same time, or if the operative sites are larger in size. Removal of a large amount of fat and fluid may require longer operating times than may be required for smaller operations. The combination of these factors can create greater hazards for infection; delays in healing; the formation of fat clots or blood clots, which may migrate to the lungs and cause death; excessive fluid loss, which can lead to shock or fluid accumulation that must be drained; friction burns or other damage to the skin or nerves or perforation injury to the vital organs; and unfavorable drug reactions. In the tumescent and super-wet techniques, the anesthetic fluid that is injected may cause lidocaine toxicity (if the solution's lidocaine content is too high), or the collection of fluid in the lungs (if too much fluid is administered).

The scars from liposuction are small and strategically placed to be hidden from view. However, imperfections in the final appearance are not uncommon after lipoplasty. The skin surface may be irregular, asymmetric or even "baggy," especially in the older patient. Numbness and pigmentation changes may occur. Sometimes, additional surgery may be recommended.

After Your Surgery

After liposuction in Sarasota, you will likely experience some fluid drainage from the incisions. To control swelling and to help your skin better fit its new contours, you will be fitted with a snug elastic garment to wear over the treated area for a few weeks. You will be given instructions on how to obtain a compression garment prior to your surgery.

Don't expect to look or feel great right after surgery. Even though the newer techniques are believed to reduce some post-operative discomforts, you may still experience some pain, burning, swelling, bleeding and temporary numbness. Pain can be controlled with medications prescribed by Dr. Kreithen, though you may still feel stiff and sore for a few days.

It is normal to feel a bit anxious or depressed in the days or weeks following surgery. However, this feeling will subside as you begin to look and feel better.

Getting Back to Normal

Healing is a gradual process. You should start walking around as soon as possible to reduce swelling and to help prevent blood clots from forming in your legs. You will begin to feel better after about a week or two and you should be back at work within a few days following your surgery. The stitches are removed or dissolve on their own within the first week to 10 days.

You should wear the compression garment as much as possible for the first two weeks, then just in the evenings for the following two weeks. It is okay to remove the garment to shower. It is not safe to drive a car within 24 hours of taking pain medication, as your reflexes and alertness may be altered.

Activity that is more strenuous should be avoided for about a month as your body continues to heal. Although most of the bruising and swelling usually disappears within three weeks, some swelling may remain for six months or more.

Dr. Kreithen will schedule follow-up visits to monitor your progress and to see if any additional procedures are needed.

If you have any unusual symptoms between visits -- for example, heavy bleeding or a sudden increase in pain -- or any questions about what you can and can't do, call Dr. Kreithen.

Your New Look

You will see a noticeable difference in the shape of your body quite soon after surgery. However, improvement will become even more apparent after about four to six weeks, when most of the swelling has subsided. After about three months, any persistent mild swelling usually disappears and the final contour will be visible.

If your expectations are realistic, you will probably be very pleased with the results of your surgery. You may find that you are more comfortable in a wide variety of clothes and more at ease with your body. And, by eating a healthy diet and getting regular exercise, you can help to maintain your new shape.

In addition to helping Sarasota and Bradenton liposuction patients achieve more harmonious body contours, Dr. Kreithen specializes in advanced post-bariatric plastic surgery procedures. Some of the post-bariatric treatments his patients request include body lift, arm lift and thigh lift in Sarasota.

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Holcomb – Kreithen Plastic Surgery and MedSpa |
1 S. School Ave. Suite 800 | Sarasota, FL
| Office: (941) 365-8679

JOSHUA KREITHEN, MD | J. DAVID HOLCOMB, MD | Breast | Body | Skin Care | Location | Find us on Google+
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