Liposuction and The Ideal Female Silhouette
I’m considering having liposuction on my hips and buttocks. How do the surgeons decide how much fat to remove during the procedure?
Despite what most people may believe, the main goal of liposuction is not really about removing as much fat as possible. The most important thing that plastic surgeons consider is whether the fat that is left behind will artfully preserve the natural contours of the body.
“There is a true art in performing liposuction,” says Dr. Robert Wilke, a board certified plastic surgeon at Edina Plastic Surgery. “Removing too much fat can not only destroy the natural contours of the body, but it can also lead to skin irregularities that may be hard or impossible to completely correct in the future. A good surgeon will take many different factors into account to achieve the best result in the overall silhouette. That is why it is so important to consult with a board certified plastic surgeon who is very experienced in this area.”
When surgeons perform liposuction of the hips, it typically also involves the flanks in order to create a smoother, more natural transition. When the fat rolls, also referred to as love handles or muffin tops, are removed or reduced the buttocks area will appear more voluptuous.
Liposuction is not a procedure that is commonly performed on the butt cheek due to the increased risk of skin asymmetries and the possibility of a sagging appearance. This is particularly true when performing liposuction on the lower half of the buttocks.
Rather than doing liposuction on the actual buttock cheek, the vast majority of patients benefit from liposuction of the upper/outer butt, outer thigh and hip-flank area.
Excess fat in the upper-outer buttock makes it appear flatter and wider. For this reason, contouring the area with liposuction can provide a dramatic improvement for the butt appearance even without the use of silicone implants or Brazilian butt lift (fat transfer).
It is important to note that the amount of fat removed via liposuction must not only be determined by the patient’s desired post-op size but balanced with the consideration of the patient’s skin elasticity and ability to re-drape to the new contour.
If a surgeon removes more fat volume than the skin can handle, a wide variety of problems can result including visible and palpable rippling or a sagging appearance. While skin asymmetries can be improved by fat transfer, which in essence is a liposuction procedure in “reverse,” patients can only expect some level of improvement, as opposed to a complete remedy.
“To put it simply,” says Dr. Robert Wilke, “the goal of liposuction in the hips and buttocks is to remove just the right amount of fat while leaving behind enough fatty tissue to preserve the natural contours of the body and maintain a smooth skin surface and a feminine silhouette.”