Most patients who undergo liposuction are pleased with the outcomes and the results. After they undergo the procedure, they go home and live their happy lives. However, like any other medical and surgical procedure, there are risks involved and not all go home happy. What are the risks of liposuction anyway?
It is important for you to understand the limitations and possible risks of liposuction surgery. Before you undergo liposuction, you should be aware of these and should weigh the risks and benefits based on your preferences. Decide for yourself whether you are willing to undergo the procedure while also being aware of the possible complications, no matter how minute they can be. Here we list down some of these risks.
Infections may happen after any surgery and may occur after liposuction too. Some physicians prescribe antibiotics to patients to prevent infections but others do not. Despite keeping the wound area clean, infections may sometimes still occur. In addition, infections may be serious or life threatening but most of the time the area around the wound will just turn red and itchy.
Embolism may occur when fat is loosened and enters the blood through blood vessels that have been damaged during liposuction. Pieces of fat get trapped in the blood vessels, gather in the lungs, or travel to the brain, where it shouldn’t be. Signs and symptoms include sudden onset of shortness of breath and difficulty breathing. If you have these symptoms, it is important for you to seek emergency medical care at once.
Puncture wounds through the organs are also possible. During liposuction, the physician is unable to see where the cannula or probe is as he or she inserts it in an attempt to target the fat. It is possible to puncture or damage internal organs during liposuction because of this. When organs are damaged, surgery may be required to repair them. Visceral perforations may also be fatal.
Nerve compression and changes in sensation may occur in the site of the liposuction. This may either be in the form of an increased sensitivity to pain and touch in the area, or the loss of any feeling in the area. If these changes in sensation persist for a long period of time you should inform your physician. In some cases, these changes in sensation may be permanent.
Skin necrosis. The skin above the liposuction site may become necrotic or turn into a black-grey color and die. When this happens, skin may also slough off. Large areas of skin necrosis may become infected with bacteria or microorganisms.
How do you prevent all these risks and complications? First, you need a top and experienced plastic surgeon. Second, you need to have a good pre-op assessment, knowing the procedure by heart and knowing how to prepare for it. Lastly, all home medications and instructions must be taken and followed.