Conveniently located to serve St. Louis, Missouri
Liposuction is the most critical aspect of all body contouring procedures. It is also the most dangerous procedure and most likely to be done incorrectly, even by board – certified plastic surgeons. Dr. Samer Cabbabe has performed thousands of liposuction and revision liposuction surgeries and is regarded as a national expert on all types of body contouring. He believes the best results come from skin removal combined with liposuction, due to the immediate fat loss and inability of the skin to tighten adequately, the skin is then removed. The liposuction itself is about contouring and sculpting the body and torso to blend the chest/breasts, abdomen, flanks, hips and buttocks together, not just a simple fat removal procedure from 1 or 2 areas of the body. To be able to do liposuction on a large surface area like this safely requires general anesthesia.
The 4D Liposuction Technique
Dr. Samer Cabbabe performs Hi-Def/4D liposuction on all his surgeries. The principals behind this ab – etching type of liposculpting involve knowing the appropriate size instruments to use, the correct anatomical areas of the body to perform liposuction on, optimal hidden incision location and correct layers of fat to remove and keep. The goal is for flattering, realistic results, not results that appear unreal and dramatic at first but then deteriorate because they are based on creating pockets of fat to look like muscle that later change and grow with weight gain. These are very difficult to revise later.
Good Candidates for Liposuction
During the consultation, Dr. Cabbabe will provide an honest and realistic discussions about your results which are based on age, skin quality, BMI, weight loss history, pregnancies. If you are over age 30, have had a pregnancy or child or have a BMI over 30, most likely you need skin removal surgery such as a tummy tuck or arm lift. If you are less than 30, have tight skin and BMI less than 30 you may be a good candidate for liposuction alone.
Why Undergo Liposuction?
Many patients initially seek liposuction initially because their skin is no longer as tight and does not hold the fat layers as well (cellulite). These are the exact patients who require skin removal with liposuction. If you can pinch and significant amount of tissue with your fingers, you will benefit from skin removal. While there are many “devices” and board – certified plastic surgeons that claim to be able to tighten skin with expensive lasers or heat applications, Dr. Cabbabe has not seen the results they promised to patients who seek revision surgery with skin removal. While their results may appear satisfactory on social media when patients are lying or standing right after surgery when the excess skin is swollen, once the swelling goes down the skin appears wrinkly and uneven with irregular, scarred layers of fatty tissue in patchy areas throughout their torso. These conditions may not be fixable in revision surgery due to fibrosis or scarring.
Fat Grafting After Liposuction
When liposuction is performed, the fat can be reinjected into desired areas including the hips/buttocks (Brazilian Butt Lift), breasts, face/lips or hands. In the procedure, Dr. Cabbabe uses small, disposable (one-time use) instruments called liposuction cannulas which are anywhere from 3-5 mm in diameter and powered by vacuum suction, power and/or ultrasound. These cannulas create multiple tunnels by removing fat with each pass. The fat is removed through the cannula by vacuum suction and out of the body into a container where it is either disposed of or re-injected. The fat can be re-injected into different areas of the body as in a butt/hip/Brazilian butt lift, fat transfer breast augmentation, fat grafting to the face/eye/lips or any other area in the body.
The Liposuction Procedure
Prior to removing the fat, a solution is injected into the areas of the body where the liposuction will be performed. The solution contains lidocaine (to numb the area) and epinephrine (to reduce bleeding). Tiny incisions are used to inject the fluid and to remove the fat with the cannulas.
Types of Liposuction:
- Traditional Liposuction: Cannula is powered by the surgeon and connected to vacuum suction. Dr. Cabbabe rarely uses this.
- Power–assisted Liposuction: Cannula is powered by electricity and vibrates and connected to vacuum suction. This is Dr. Cabbabe’s preferred method of liposuction.
- Ultrasound–assisted Liposuction: Cannula is powered by ultrasound and vibrates and generates heat. This is connected to vacuum suction. A damp, cool towel must be always placed between the skin and cannula to prevent burning of the skin due to heat generation. Dr. Cabbabe believes this is a high – risk, low – reward type of liposuction. The results are no better than power- assisted liposuction and the risk of burning the skin or causing deformity is higher due to the heat generated.
- Laser–assisted Liposuction (SmartLipo, LaserLipo, VaserLipo, etc.): Any of the above types of liposuction are used to remove fat with vacuum suction. After the fat has been removed, a laser is passed under the skin to heat the skin. This has been claimed to “tighten the skin”. Dr. Cabbabe believes these products cannot tighten skin any better than the human body is able to do on its own. This is based on his personal experience of thousands of surgeries and revisions. These procedures are often significantly more expensive due to the cost of the laser/overhead.
- SAFE liposuction: Dr. Cabbabe utilizes this technique commonly. This is a 3-step process of separation, aspiration and fat equalization. Using cannulas to separate the tissues, remove fat, reshape the remaining tissues to prevent dimpling and contour deformities. Fat may be re-injected in areas where too much fat may have been removed. This is particularly useful in the thighs and hips where contour deformities may occur more commonly.
In some instances, minimal liposuction may be done in the office without the need for general anesthesia. These are mainly touch up liposuction surgeries. Prior to the procedure, you may be given oral medication to help with discomfort. However, Dr. Cabbabe believes the vast majority of the procedures should be done in the operating room with appropriate anesthesiologists to assist with your comfort and safety. As the fluid that is injected in the tissues is removed with liposuction, the procedure can become uncomfortable for patients. The oral pain medicine will no provide sufficient relief in these situations and an intravenous anesthetic can assist with this. Also, if complications were to arise, the board – certified anesthesiologist can deliver potentially life-saving care.
Dr. Cabbabe incorporates his experience with reconstructive and cosmetic surgery of the body to give his patients the best results possible to meet their desires. He is an expert in cosmetic, reconstructive and minimally invasive body surgery. During your consultation, Dr. Cabbabe will carefully examine you and will make recommendations in order to help you achieve your desired result.
Your Liposuction Consultation
During your consultation Dr. Cabbabe will review your concerns and make recommendations to help you reach and exceed your goals. Dr. Cabbabe believes the key to a great result involves the correct proportions and harmony flowing from the chest to the abdomen, hips, pelvis and buttocks.
All surgeries are performed with safety as the #1 priority. Dr. Cabbabe is a double board – certified plastic surgeon and the current Chief of Plastic Surgery at his hospital. He has an impeccable track record of safety with minimal complications for the extended scope of work being done for his patients. There are never elective marathon surgeries exceeding 6-7 hours as this is well-established as leading to a high rate of complications, including death. All major surgeries are performed in the hospital and overnight stays with IV fluids and monitoring are required for these surgeries with discharge generally the following day after approval from Dr. Cabbabe or his staff.
Before & After Gallery
View before-and-after pictures of real patients of Cabbabe Plastic Surgery
What to Expect After the Procedure
Multiple things are done to minimize scarring including techniques during surgery and dressings and incision care after surgery. We carry a silicone gel in our office, silicone tape is also helpful to minimize scarring and can be purchased online, silicone is the active ingredient to look for. Patients should take iron supplementation prior to surgery, a multivitamin with iron once a day or iron with calcium once a day is recommended 3 months prior to surgery. Blood loss is always a part of surgery, particularly liposuction, and anemia must be minimized prior to surgery for optimal results. Patients need to be in good general medical health with no significant heart, lung or other organ problems. Risks increase in patients with increasing BMI and 35 is generally recommended for safety and optimal results. The results for patients over BMI 35 is often unsatisfactory and weight loss is recommended.
Patients will be expected to wear compression garments for a minimum of 6 weeks after surgery and lymphatic massages are generally recommended starting within 1 week of surgery. We can help you with recommendations.
Useful items to have on hand include: additional compression garments/FAJA’s (more than one size), extra pillows, BBL pillow (as needed), extra gauze, polysporin ointment and Vaseline or other similar moisturizers. It is helpful to have a recliner to sleep on for the first week or two when you transition to a bed. Extra compression garments, including FAJA’s in different sizes, are helpful as your size will decrease after swelling goes down. Female urination devices can be purchased on Amazon to be used while garments are worn.
Return to full work and exercise is generally within 2-3 weeks of surgery due to Dr. Cabbabe’s protocols which he has built based on hundreds of body contouring surgeries.
Contact Our Office
Dr. Cabbage is a highly-skilled, double-board certified plastic surgeon who will develop a surgical plan that’s tailored to your specific needs. If you’re interested in learning more about the procedure, contact our office to schedule your informative consultation today.