Many prospective patients worry about undergoing awake lipo due to safety concerns. They fear they’ll experience some pain during the procedure, or that there might be a surgical complication. Yet there is no cause for concern. Liposuction is very popular these days, and countless people undergo lipo procedures while awake every year. It’s safer to have liposuction while awake and under a local anesthetic than while asleep and fully anesthetized.
Is Liposuction Under Local Anesthetic Painful?
You needn’t worry about liposuction under local anesthetic being painful. In fact, you’ll experience no pain or discomfort at all. All you’ll feel is the surgeon touching your skin, and you may feel some pressure. You won’t feel the incisions or the suction.
Although some people have concerns about being awake during their procedure, there’s no need to worry. Local anesthetics are safer for patients than general anesthetics. Healthcare professionals like dentists, doctors, and nurses use local anesthetics when carrying out procedures. You’ve probably had dental treatment under local anesthetic before. You can rest assured you won’t suffer during your surgery.
Is A General Anesthetic Safer for Surgery?
There’s a common misconception that general aesthetics are the safest option. Yet, that isn’t strictly true. In some cases, general anesthetics are the best option because of the operation’s complexity or length. But for procedures like liposuction, a local anesthetic is best.
General anesthetics come with some potential risks that patients should know about. In some cases, they have unpleasant side effects. Patients can experience vomiting and nausea, which is distressing after surgery. Also, general anesthetics may result in allergic reactions. Some of these can be severe and even life-threatening.
After a procedure under general anesthetic, patients also have a more extended recovery period. The larger instruments that surgeons use on fully anesthetized patients can cause more tissue trauma. That trauma takes longer to heal and causes more post-surgery pain for the patient. All these factors mean it’s best to avoid general anesthetics during surgery whenever possible.
What Are the Benefits of a Local Anesthetic for Liposuction?
Surgeons prefer to use local anesthetic for patients undergoing liposuction because it comes with so many benefits. There are benefits for both the surgeon and the patient themselves.
Patients can eat and drink before their procedure – something that’s impossible with a general anesthetic. That means they feel more comfortable before their surgery. The recovery period is also shorter and easier for patients. There is less risk of developing side effects, and patients can return home immediately after surgery.
Surgery is less risky when the patient is under a local anesthetic. There is no need to monitor breathing or other vital statistics during the procedure. Also, the surgery time may be shorter. That is because the patient can move themselves, and there’s no need to spend time on repositioning.
Both surgeons and patients, therefore, reap the advantages of a local anesthetic for liposuction surgery.
Could Local Anesthetic Help the Surgeon Achieve a Better Result?
Another potential benefit of cosmetic surgery under local anesthetic is that it may be possible to achieve a better result. The surgeon is under time pressure when a patient is under general anesthetic. They must hurry to complete the procedure to minimize the risks for the patient. With a local anesthetic, there’s no need to rush. Surgeons can take their time and use smaller, more precise instruments. That means less potential for damage to the tissues and nerves.
When a patient is awake but in no pain during their surgery, they can move and reposition themselves. They can stand up to allow the surgeon to see the effect of gravity on their body. The surgeon can also check that both sides of the body are even. They can see if they need to make any adjustments more easily. That is impossible when the patient is under a full anesthetic, so there is more risk of lopsidedness or lumps and bumps.
Another great benefit of being under local anesthetic is that patients can move and tense their muscles during the procedure. That allows a skilled surgeon to sculpt more closely to the muscle and create a more contoured and sculpted look. They can also more easily remove the maximum amount of fat. This “Active Lipo” technique produces truly impressive patient outcomes, but not every surgeon can offer it.
Dr. Su is the pioneer of the Active Lipo technique. As an expert in the liposuction field, he achieves amazingly sculpted results for his patients. Thanks to his expertise, patients are also extremely safe in his skilled hands.
To learn more about Awake Lipo and the Active Lipo technique, contact Dr. Su and the ArtLipo team now. You can arrange a consultation and take your first step toward achieving the contoured body you desire.
Dr. Hamwi is an aesthetic plastic surgeon specializing in cosmetic surgical and non-invasive procedures. After completing residencies in both plastic surgery and general surgery as well as a fellowship at Harvard University, Dr. Hamwi then went on to pursue an aesthetic surgery fellowship at one of the country’s most competitive programs in Manhattan, New York. Less than one percent of plastic surgeons have completed such specialized training.