Who Is a Good Candidate for Liposuction?

Are you frustrated by a lack of progress sculpting your ideal body despite how much effort you are putting into it? Are you confident that you can maintain your weight in the future? Are you in relatively good health? If so, you may be a good candidate for liposuction, a body contouring procedure offered at Burt and Will Plastic Surgery and Dermatology in Burr Ridge, IL. Today, we’re taking a closer look at who may qualify.

Who Is a Good Candidate for Liposuction?

Someone With Stubborn Pockets of Fat

There’s a good chance you’ll qualify for liposuction if you struggle with getting rid of stubborn pockets of fat. However, you need to come in for an evaluation to determine definitively whether your areas of concern can be treated effectively. If there is only a small amount of excess subcutaneous fat in your problem area, the procedure won’t be very effective.

Similarly, lipo may not be able to help you achieve your body goals if there is too much excess fat in an area of concern. The best candidate for this procedure is at their ideal weight and has a BMI that falls within the 18.5 to 24.9 range. If your BMI is 30 or greater, you may not be healthy enough to undergo this procedure and you may have too much excess fat in your problem areas to qualify.

Someone Who Can Maintain Their Weight After Their Procedure

It is very important that you get a handle on your diet and exercise routine before considering this procedure. The results are permanent because your body stops growing fat cells around the time you turn 25. Since this procedure involves excess fat cells being suctioned out, you’ll never have as many fat cells in the treatment area again. However, this procedure only involves the removal of some of the fat cells in the treatment area.

Therefore, if you gain a significant amount of fat after getting liposuction, some of the excess fat may be stored in the fat cells that remain in the treatment area. If you gain too much weight after your procedure, you may store so much excess fat in the treated areas that you need a follow-up procedure. Individual circumstances vary, but it is generally not advisable to gain more than 10 pounds of fat after your procedure.

Someone Who Is Fairly Healthy

It is worth mentioning that your BMI should be 29.9 or lower to qualify for lipo because obesity can be diagnosed at a BMI of 30. To reiterate, obese individuals are not always healthy enough to undergo lipo. Specifically, individuals who have been diagnosed with obesity often have heart and lung problems, and it is incredibly important that your heart and lungs are in fairly good health.

This is because a healthy heart and optimally functional lungs are required to qualify for general anesthesia, and general anesthesia is usually administered before the procedure starts. If your heart and lungs aren’t healthy enough to qualify for general anesthesia, you will need to undergo the procedure with local anesthesia. It is also important to be in fairly good health because recovering from an illness requires a lot of energy.

Someone Who Can Commit to the Recovery Process

It is important that you are currently healthy and have not been ill in the past two weeks because it requires a lot of energy to recover from an illness. However, recovering from lipo also requires quite a bit of energy. The less rested you are, the longer your recovery will take, but most of your recovery will be complete after only a week or two if you are well-rested.

Specifically, to qualify for this procedure, you need to be able to commit to sleeping at least 7.5 hours per night, and you need to be able to take a week or two off from work. You also need to be able to go six to eight weeks without engaging in strenuous physical activity, like lifting heavy weights or competing in an intense triathlon. Other recovery steps you need to be able to follow include:

  • Not smoking
  • Not drinking alcohol
  • Napping when you feel really tired
  • Staying hydrated
  • Eating plenty of protein
  • Eating lots of vitamin C
  • Eating enough soluble fiber


Someone Who Can Follow All Preparation Steps

It isn’t enough to have a healthy heart and lungs to qualify for general anesthesia. You also need to be able to follow all preparation steps. Specifically, you must be able to forgo food and dark liquids for eight hours prior to your appointment. You also need to be willing and able to forgo drinking clear liquids for two hours prior to your procedure.

If you can’t imagine skipping breakfast, you can talk to us about whether it would be better to opt for local anesthesia or schedule your procedure late in the day. You also must be willing and able to forgo tobacco and alcohol consumption for several days prior to your procedure. Skipping alcohol and tobacco indulgence is also an important part of recovering as quickly as possible. Other preparation steps you should take include:

  • Getting a good night’s sleep
  • Ensuring you are well-nourished
  • Ensuring you are hydrated
  • Arranging for someone to drive you home
  • Arranging for someone to stay with you


Someone Who Has a Strong Support System

Having a strong support system is a crucial part of recovering from lipo. Regardless of how you are sedated and anesthetized during your procedure, you cannot drive within 24 hours of being put under. Therefore, you will need someone to drive you home. If your partner can’t take time off from work to drop you off and pick you up, you can take a taxi or ridesharing service home.

However, it is highly advisable to have someone stay with you for the first 24 to 72 hours of your recovery. If your partner can’t stay home with you, reach out to family members who may have a little more flexibility. You will probably feel exhausted, but you need to make sure you are hydrating.

Someone Who Has Realistic Expectations About the Procedure

It is also important that you have realistic expectations about the procedure if you want to qualify for lipo. Before your procedure begins, we will inspect the treatment areas to verify that the skin is not irritated. Then, we will clean the treatment areas and administer the anesthesia. We will also administer intravenous sedation if you will only be receiving local anesthesia. Once all of the preparation steps are complete, we will make a small incision.

Through this small incision, we will suction out some of the fat in your area of concern. Generally, this procedure takes between three and four hours to complete, but this is heavily dependent on the size of our treatment areas and the specific technique used. Also, the amount of fat that needs to be removed plays a part. Once the fat is suctioned out, the incision will be closed, and we will observe you as you wake up from the anesthesia.

Someone Who Has Realistic Expectations About the Results

It is very important that you have realistic expectations about the results of this procedure. Lipo provides permanent fat removal results because the fully developed human body can’t grow new fat cells to replace the ones that were suctioned out. However, there is always a chance that your ideal contours will change noticeably if something goes seriously wrong with your diet or exercise routine.

You also need to understand that this procedure only removes some of the fat cells in the area of concern. Generally, up to 11 pounds of fat can be removed during a single session. However, you must know that we can only remove a certain percentage of your body weight safely. If you are a short woman and already at your goal weight, we won’t be able to remove 11 pounds of fat during your procedure.

Find Out Today Whether You Qualify for This Body Sculpting Procedure

As a general rule of thumb, you will be considered a good candidate for liposuction if you are frustrated by your current contours, confident you can maintain your weight post-op, and fairly healthy. However, the only way to find out for sure whether this procedure is appropriate for you is to come in for an initial evaluation. Contact us today at Burt and Will Plastic Surgery and Dermatology in Burr Ridge, IL to schedule an appointment and learn more.

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