It might seem a little odd to get liposuction of the legs, right? I mean, we don’t usually think of the legs as having an awful lot of fat in the first place. When we think of liposuction, we tend to think of the belly, instead. But it turns out patients that get liposuction of the legs are actually pretty common.
Of course, that’s probably a little less surprising if you understand why people get liposuction in the first place. For most people, liposuction is not a weight loss plan. Instead, it’s used as a means to eliminate stubborn areas of fat that, otherwise, aren’t really going anywhere.
And those stubborn areas of fat can—and do—often reside in some nontraditional places. One of those places happens to be the legs. Imagine exercises daily, eating right, and still, you can’t shake that fat off of your legs. Well, that’s one reason liposuction of the legs is so popular.
How Does Liposuction of the Legs Work?
Most liposuction procedures follow the same basic steps. A small incision is made in the target area. Next, a small tube, called a cannula, is inserted. The surgeon will run the tube back and forth beneath the skin, sucking up the desired amount of fat. When that’s all done, the small incision is closed and, after a brief recuperating period, the patient is allowed to return home for the duration of recovery.
Liposuction of the legs isn’t that different, but there are some specific ways this technique (and target area) differs.
- A Smaller Cannula: Liposuction of the legs sometimes uses a smaller, thinner cannula than traditional liposuction. This minimizes recovery and helps promote faster healing. This smaller cannula can be used on the legs because, often, the volume of fat to remove is not as high as in other areas of the body (such as the tummy).
- Body Contouring is a Must: The results of leg liposuction procedures must blend in with the surrounding body in order to look natural. Because so much of this area of the body is often visible, much work must be done to ensure that the leg is properly contoured. This means that liposuction may be performed on the entire inner or outer thigh, for example, in order to address one problem area.
- High Concentrations of Muscle: The legs have a higher concentration of muscle than the belly area, as you might imagine (although everyone’s body can be dramatically different). In any case, surgeons must often work around the leg muscle when doing this type of liposuction. For patients, this can mean a slightly longer and more uncomfortable recovery, but the results are usually quite effective.
Patients will want to consult with their plastic surgeons to determine the best way to achieve the slimmer legs they’re after.
What’s Different with Leg Liposuction Recovery?
Any liposuction recovery period will depend largely on the extent of the liposuction performed. The more area covered, in most cases, the longer the recovery period will be. Now, there’s isn’t a huge difference, but it’s something to think about. When it comes to liposuction of the thigh, there are a few unique challenges that patients should be prepared to encounter.
- After the procedure, patients will feel fatigue in their legs. This is different from typical liposuction of the belly, for example, in that you will feel as though you have been exercising vigorously. That type of fatigue will take several days to go away.
- As with other forms of liposuction, patients might experience swelling and bruising after the liposuction procedure. In some cases, drains may be placed at the site of the incision in order to facilitate drainage and keep swelling under control.
- You will likely be given a compression garment to wear around your legs to help keep swelling under control and improve your overall results. It might be necessarily for patients to wear this compression garment for up to six weeks following your procedure; that means you can count on wearing compression garments around your legs for at least a month.
Your surgeon will give you detailed recovery instructions after your liposuction, and it’s important that you follow those instructions closely in order to protect your desired final results.
What Are the Benefits of Liposuction of the Leg?
Patients who want to get liposuction of the legs do so because they want to experience the results! Many people who have struggled with areas of fat in the legs for years see liposuction as a way to finally get the slim, sexy legs they’ve always wanted.
The benefits of liposuction of the lower extremities include the following:
- People will finally be able to see and appreciate the muscles and the tone of the legs
- The lower body and the upper body will have a more pleasing proportion
- Patients will be able to get rid of areas of fat that were previously stubborn and unmovable
- Many patients report a significant increase in confidence and self-esteem
- Depending on the area of the liposuction, patients may find that clothing (and even boots) will fit better, increasing wardrobe options
Of course, it’s important to keep in mind some realistic expectation when undergoing thigh liposuction or calf liposuction. These procedures will be able to contour your legs, but they are not necessarily “weight loss” surgery options. In fact, surgeons prefer that most liposuction patients be of a stable weight in order to achieve their desired looks.
Getting the Legs You’ve Always Wanted
At the heart of this matter is a feeling: you want to feel good about your legs. You want to feel like your legs are doing you favors. You don’t want to cover up your legs or feel as though you need to hide them. And for patients who do feel self-conscious about their legs, liposuction of the inner thigh, outer thigh, or calf might be the answer.
If you want to know more about liposuction of the legs, contact your local plastic surgeon to schedule a confidential consultation. Liposuction surgeons have an excellent eye for knowing how much fat can be removed, from where, and how that might get you your desired final results.