Liposuction:The Good, Bad & Ugly -- Oklahoma City Plastic Surgeon Warns Cosmetic Surgery Patients to Avoid Poor Outcomes

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Oklahoma City plastic surgeon, Juan Brou MD, addresses the difficult topic of liposuction gone bad, offering advice to help ensure cosmetic surgery patients get good results, explaining concerns related to highly promoted laser liposuction (SmartLipo, SlimLipo) and ultrasonic liposuction (Vaser, Lysonics) when handled by untrained or inexperienced professionals, and discussing what can be done to correct poor outcomes.

Preventing and correcting bad liposuction

These highly promoted forms of liposuction have grown in popularity, but so have the number of reports of unfavorable results that are difficult and sometimes impossible to correct.

Liposuction receives a lot of attention from the public and it is no surprise that it is the most commonly performed procedure in plastic surgery, but plastic surgeons urge consumers to do their homework to avoid a liposuction procedure gone bad.

Recently, with the advent of new technology, liposuction has expanded beyond the realm of plastic surgery into other medical specialties.

"In some instances, general practitioners with no surgical training are now performing liposuction in their offices under local anesthesia and promoting it as 'safe,' 'non-invasive' liposuction or even 'non-surgical' liposuction and some understate the recovery time (lunch time liposuction) necessary to obtain a good result," explained Juan Brou, MD, a board certified plastic surgeon in Oklahoma City.

"It is important for the consumer to always remember that liposuction is surgery and it is invasive particularly when some form of additional energy is introduced as with laser liposuction (SmartLipo, SlimLipo) and ultrasonic liposuction (Vaser, Lysonics)."

-Laser or Ultrasonic Marketing & Concerns-

Brou said the addition of energy disrupts the fatty tissue more aggressively so it can be extracted more efficiently. However, the caveat is that it can also cause too much disruption and therefore deformity, especially when done by an untrained or unqualified practitioner.

"Perhaps as the result of clever marketing, these highly promoted forms of liposuction have grown in popularity, but so have the number of reports of unfavorable results that are difficult and sometimes impossible to correct," Brou said.

Compounding the problem, patients who have experienced unfavorable results are often embarrassed or ashamed to come forward with their problems, which could help warn others in hopes of preventing similar negative outcomes.

The fact is, while many might assume that liposuction is a relatively simple procedure, liposuction done well requires meticulous study, training and experience on the part of the medical professional.

-Expertise Matters-

Liposuction done well requires knowledge to determine what constitutes an attractive human contour; to decide when a patient is a good candidate or not; to evaluate whether a patient's skin will allow for a good outcome; and particularly a sense of what is too much energy, too much suction and too much compression during recovery to prevent permanent damage.

Last year at the meeting for the ASAPS (American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery) in Las Vegas, a lot of emphasis was placed on how to correct deformities after liposuction. Talented plastic surgery experts presented difficult cases that were corrected with the use of fat grafting, a type of correction that becomes even more challenging if all or most of the patient's fat stores have already been removed in a defective procedure.

Brou added the best results are usually obtained during the first surgery and not when trying to correct damage.

-Ensuring Good Liposuction Results-

To safeguard against poor liposuction results, it is critical to do your homework. Here are a few tips:

  • Thoroughly research the competency of the practitioner before deciding to allow him or her to handle your liposuction procedure.
  • Visit more than one expert.
  • Get references from friends and other people who have used the physician to find out if they are satisfied with their results.
  • Request before and after photos to determine if they clearly show improvement.
  • Ask the physician if he or she knows how to correct bad results.

"I frequently consult with patients who have experienced a poor liposuction outcome or a result that has left them dissatisfied. My goal is to help them by providing a free evaluation of their plastic surgery needs and to help create a plan to address issues resulting from improper or poorly executed procedures," Brou said.

He emphasized that correcting a poor result is not easy and requires even more expertise. As an experienced, board certified plastic surgeon in Oklahoma City with extensive cosmetic surgery experience, including fat grafting for aesthetic enhancement of the face and body, Brou emphasized the importance of choosing the right plastic surgeon for initial and corrective procedures.

For more information on how to choose a plastic surgeon, liposuction in Oklahoma and liposuction used in conjunction with other procedures, such as tummy tucks, body lifts and facelifts, visit my website at


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