If you are overweight and have been thinking about having some kind of weight-loss surgery, you are not alone. With obesity on the rise many are looking for a fast-track way to lose weight other than with boring workouts and traditional diets; if you’re considering liposuction as an alternative to losing weight, think again.

Cosmetic surgeons never tire of asserting that liposuction is not a weight loss surgery; it is an intervention to reduce localized fat deposits in people with normal weight. Those who assure that if a person has say 40 pounds in excess, with a liposuction they will lose them and they will look great maintaining results over time, are not telling the truth and their speech borders on charlatanism.

Although fat removal surgery is a much easier alternative to diet and exercise for many people, studies have shown that fat removal through liposuction does not provide any of the health benefits experienced when losing weight with diet and exercise (low blood pressure, low blood sugar levels, improved cardiovascular and fitness levels, increased muscle tone, etc.).

In the past, megaliposuctions had become popular, but represented a lot of suffering for the patient with little or no satisfactory results and with several of them ending in tragedies due to the fact that patients decompensated too much and it was not possible to save them.

Liposuction does not help to lose weight, it does not work if patient is overweight; those 360° circular liposuctions of waist, thighs, buttocks and knees are not useful at all. Even though we extracted gallons of fat, all those areas are filled with adipocytes; these cells are genetically conditioned to accumulate vacuoles of fat and the remaining ones will reproduce and multiply in a short time so that patient is back to the beginning.

Distribution of body fat in certain areas is genetically conditioned and no surgery can change the DNA or genetic code. No matter how successful the operation might be, we cannot stop genetic code from sending orders to adipocytes to accumulate fat back again. Cosmetic surgeons cannot change metabolism.

This is why liposuction, enormously effective in the case of people with normal weight and localized fat deposits, is not useful if there are accumulations of fat all over the body; it is not a technique to lose weight because no matter how much volume we remove, there is still a lot of adipose tissue with an exquisite predisposition to increase its volume again.

Many cosmetic surgeons use the fat obtained from liposuction to reinject it into the buttocks (fat grafting a.k.a. Brazilian Butt Lift) in order to supposedly achieve increase of volume and contouring; actually this procedure has proven to be a wishful thinking; we feel that by saying this we can be touching the economic interests of many colleagues.

Transplanted fat is reabsorbed a few months later and buttocks looks the same as before. If there is one thing liposuction may help is that it makes the buttocks stand out and look more relevant once having got rid of fat deposits nearby that literally buried them.

At this point it is good to mention that to improve the appearance of buttocks and hips in terms of volume and contour, nowadays there is an far better solution than the Brazilian Butt Lift called Bioplasty by PMMA developed in Brazil and also available in other South American countries which in combination with fat removal from localized areas achieves a stupendous synergy. This method of combining two or more compatible procedures in order to create synergy between them and multiply the results that would be obtained with the individual procedures, is called “stacking”. Therefore, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

In conclusion, liposuction is not an option for overweight people. If you are one of them and cannot lose weight through exercise and diet, then perhaps you should find out about gastric bypass surgery or some sort of banding or stapling procedure. These types of surgeries have helped many patients to achieve a better quality of life.

Author:
I. LeMarquis M.D.
Chief Medical Officer at Bioplasty International Center Colombia