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My liposuctioned fat came back TO THE SAME AREA! Has this happened to you?

  • upset_lipo_patient
  • 1 year ago

Hi. This is my first time posting here. I'm very sad right now. :( I'm 27 years old and I've always been a very thin person. I have very small hips, chicken legs, wirey arms, very small breasts and a flat bootie. :( It seems the reason why I am so thin is because all the fat I ingest goes to ONE AREA. Well, 2 technically. My stomach and my flanks. It's very disproportional and extremely unattractive to be skinny with a swollen, flabby belly and love handles that are wider than your hips. My husband and I don't have very much money at all, but last year we made the huge investment of getting liposuction in my belly and love handles. We shopped around for the best surgeon in the city, took out a big loan, and did it. The recovery was by far the worst pain I've ever experienced in my life and I was completely debilitated for 2 weeks. During the first week of recovery, my husband called my surgeon on 2 different occasions at 3 and 4 in the morning, worried sick because I was in so much pain I couldn't stop crying all night. My surgeon prescribed stronger pain meds for me and said he's never had anyone go through as much pain as I seemed to be going through. He told me it must be because since I'm such a small person with so much localized fat, the surface area to work with was much smaller than it is with other patients and so the surgery and pain were more intense. Anyway, once the garment came off and I was able to see what I looked like, I understood why my surgeon had such a great reputation. I looked amazing. I almost cried when I saw my new body in the mirror and found that I was able to sit down without my belly creating a huge bulge over my pants.... without my belly even making a fold! I was so happy about finally being able to wear jeans without a muffin top, and for the first time in my life I felt like a normal person in my bikini. I went to stores and tried on tight dresses that I could never afford just so that I could see that I actually looked like a woman rather than some sort of deformed being with access fat on the midsection of a skinny body. This feeling unfortunately did not last all too long. Less than 2 months later I started noticing a slight change in my treated area. It still looked really good and it still looked WAY better than pre surgery, but somehow it just didn't seem quite as tight and cut anymore. I tried to brush it off and thought maybe it was all in my head. I was in denial for several more weeks, but the more time went by, the more I kept noticing a slight gain of fat to the same area again. It was probably 4 or 5 months after the surgery until I finally said something to my husband about it. And to my dismay he said "yeah I kinda noticed it too but didn't want to say anything." That was when I knew it was NOT just in my head... and that's when I was forced to face the reality that fat is slowly but surely coming back to the same exact spot that got treated. :( It is now 1 1/2 years since the surgery and while it's still not back to the pre operative state YET, I m back to feeling as though I can't wear jeans, can't feel comfortable in a bikini, and hate looking at myself in the mirror without a shirt on. The bulge is there again when I sit down, my love handles are back, and the same looseness that I can grab a handful of is back in my belly. :( I am devastated. I have moved to a different state so I cannot go back and talk to my former surgeon. I keep googling "fat comes back after lipo" but once again, all the search ever shows is that fat comes back to a different area... and that it's impossible for the fat to localize back in the same place. I am so upset, frustrated, disappointing, and confused as to why this is happening when everything I ever heard is that it CAN'T come back to the same place!  I don't want to live like this. I don't want to live hating my body, not feeling comfortable in my own skin, and not feeling like I look feminine. But I don't know WHAT to do. I have tried diet/exercise in the past but that just leads to me feeling extremely hungry and the results are never what I want. Since I am a skinny person with localized fat, this isn't as simple for me as just losing weight. Sure, I can burn more calories a day than I take in, go to bed feeling absolutely starved, and lose about 5 pounds. (I am 5'7" and I weigh about 110 lbs). But doing that will just make me look skinnier over all... it won't give me a tight, flat belly and do away with the love handles. I've thought that maybe if I do a Brazilian Butt lift and the fat is transferred from my belly to my butt, if that will finally stop the fat from coming back to my belly? More than anything right now I'm just completely bewildered as to why this is happening when everything I read out there about lipo says that fat does not come back to treated areas. If this has happened to you, or if you know anything about this, please please please respond to this post. I am so upset right now... :(       

Comments (11)

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How frustrating! I wonder if lifting weights would help? I plan to start working with a trainer once I feel back to normal. My midsection (pre kids, mind you) was slimmer when I weighed only slightly less than I do now, but I was working out with weights several times per week.
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i've had lipo more than twice and every time it's come back in the same area also in extra area's .
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In what area have you had it that's come back??
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i had lipo on my stomach ,back ,inner and outer thighs. i've ha lipo on my stomach 5 times and I'm about to have lipo on it again. my story a little different then yours. to make a long story short. ihad lipo the first time i went from 155lbs down to 124lbs and looked amazing .I was 36 at the time had a baby at 37 and every since I've had lipo 4 times after my baby was born my stomach has gotten bigger and bigger and i would get surgery about a year later it would get bigger and any weight i've gained over the years has gone back to ALL areas I've had lipo'd. I'm now 48 and have spent $6000, $5700, 8,000 and $16,000 and I'm saving to get those SAME AREA'S done again.
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Thank you all for the replies. NewSelf is right... at 110 lbs and 5'7", I'm already really thin and trying to lose weight wouldn't be a great idea. My problem isn't my weight, my problem is the unproportional localized fat I have in a very undesiring area- my belly/flanks. I would have LOVED to have gained fat back on my thighs or hips or butt or wherever, really. But alas, I gained it back in the same place. :( PatientAwareness, thank you for the response. While I'm not a health guru like you, I do try to keep healthier habits. I go on walks with my husband every night, and also do Zumba a couple times a week. I cook my meals at home every night, and am not constantly eating out. I never ever ever drink my calories (water only). Yes, I usually do have something sweet at some point during the day. Like a piece of cake I made or a bowl of ice cream. But I definitely wouldn't say it's excessive. As for your thoughts that this might just be loose skin from the swelling of post lipo... no, it really isn't. My doctor had me in a really REALLY tight garment so the swelling was actually very minimal. And once the swelling was subsided, I was left with a very great looking mid section. What I have now is not loose skin... it's fat that has gradually been coming back in the course of the past year and a half. Now, whether it is new fat cells or just an expansion of the few that were left, I do not know. But I honestly think it's new fat cells. I think for some reason my body simply REFUSES to store fat anywhere else, and so it had no other choice but to create more fat cells in the treated area. :( I don't know why this is happening though, and I wish I knew if this had ever happened to anyone else...
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If you have gained girth, can you be sure that the fat cells that are expanding are the same ones as those that were suctioned out? Could it be that adjacent fat cells in your torso expanded causing girth (body circumference) to expand? If you have more surgery, how can you be sure that the severe pain won’t happen again? Have you considered that post surgical edema (if you even had any) created a taut impression at first, but possibly the skin was left loose and lax from having some of your underlying fat stores removed? I’m not suggesting that I have any idea what happened to your body, or what would be good for you moving forward. I’m just posing questions that came up for me when I read what you wrote.
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There are so many things I'd like to comment on that you wrote, but the topics are too diverse for just one post. By the way, whatever I write is just my understanding, not medical advice for you or anyone readiing. About diet and exercise: I don't think that depriving the body of essential nutrients is helpful. There's a lot of information that suggests an inadequately fueled body will choose to drop calorie-burning muscle rather than fat. For me, before my surgery, an ongoing healthy lifestyle diet (as opposed to a short-term starvation diet), and a solid workout routine (resistance training, cardio, and stretching/yoga) felt vital to fuel a good metabolism, build and maintain muscle tissue, maintain flexibility, and so on. I loved to work out, and the benefits reverberated to every area of my health and life, so I did so daily. Also, I felt my best, by eating mini meals 4 – 5 times a day… but every body has different needs, and I can’t know what is right for you. My diet was comprised of: vegetables, protein, whole grains, (limited) fruit, and healthy fats (derived from almonds, avocados, and such), and I generally didn’t eat gluten, sugar, preservatives, caffeine or alcohol. I liked to feel great, so I was attuned to which foods/exercise helped me do so. I found that focusing on the scale wasn’t accurate for me because muscle tissue is more dense than fat, and I had a lot of muscle due to my workouts. With or without any sort of surgery, it seems as though healthy lifestyle habits would be important.
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Wow, that is very frustrating! You are very thin overall at 110 lbs! I wouldn't think it would be healthy to lose further weight. I will say that I am a little taller and heavier than you, and am about six months post tummy tuck with lipo...I have not regained weight in the lipo areas although I do feel that I am more likely to store weight in my thighs than I used to.
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Thank you ladies. I just don't understand why this happened... :(
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I'm taking some time to compose a well worded answer for you, from my experience, but in the meantime, I wanted to let you know that I'm so sorry to read about your pain and frustration.
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Hi there, welcome and thanks for sharing with us!

I'm sure some of the other Lipo members will help you out with advice. In the meantime, you might find some help in this Lipo forum post as well.

I hope this helps!

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