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If Body Contouring is Used to Remove Fat, How then Does That Not Translate to Weight Loss?

If body contouring is used to remove fat, how then does that not translate to weight loss?

Doctor Answers (7)

Liposuction and No Weight Loss

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   You are correct that liposuction does remove some nominal amount of weight, but the lesser density of fat means that there is little mass for a given volume even if the volume is relatively large.  Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA


Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 204 reviews

How Much Weight Will I Lose With Body Contouring?

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   Dear Hrachelle21,  This is the most common question I hear in my practice. Body contouring refers to any surgical method that shapes the body and includes: Tummy tucks, liposuction, belt lifts, brachioplasty (arm lift) etc. It is very important to understand that these procedures are meant to improve your shape and are not considered a primary means for weight loss. Removing fat with liposuction may have little affect on your weight but may show significant changes in how you look or in your clothing size. However, some patients with skin and fat resection will experience a reduction in their overall weight. This is dependent on how much tissue is removed, but it is rarely more than a few pounds. As always, the key to success after body contouring is a good healthy diet and regular exercise. Good luck. Dr. G.

Douglas L. Gervais, MD
Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 81 reviews

Liposuction and weight loss

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Body contouring procedures are intended towards re-shaping the body silhoutte. it is not a procedure for people who are seeking weight loss. Fat in itself adds little to the total body weight but it adds to the sizes and defines your shape. hence, thinking that liposuction will help with weight loss is not a significant weight loss

Misbah Khan, MD
New York Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

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Liposuction and weightloss

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One of the most common questions asked regarding body contouring surgery is "how much weight will I loose from the surgery?" Liposuction and other body contouring procedures (tummy tucks, etc) are not "weight loss surgery" in the same way that a LapBand or gastric bypass. Those procedures facilitate ongoing weight loss through a variety of ways. The goal of liposuction and body contouring surgery is to improve the overall shape and contour of one's body. Invariably, there is some weight reduction simply due to the removal of the fat (and skin). This is typically a few pounds. Most of the aesthetic improvement comes from the improved contour rather than the actual reduction in weight. Patients should be diligent after surgery to maintain a steady weight, regular exercise program and a sensible diet to maintain these results for the long run.

Lawrence Iteld, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Liposuction and weight loss

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Liposuction is for body contouring purposes. The amount of actual fat removed from specific areas may not be significant in terms of pounds but it changes the appearance.

Robert L. Kraft, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Body contouring and weight loss

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Weight loss does occur with body contouring by excision procedures and liposuction. It's often not as much as you would think. Remember early post-op your acitivity level goes down and you retain a lot of fluid. It takes several weeks maybe months to get back to normal.

Steven Wallach, MD
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Weight loss and liposuction

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Yes liposuction does result in some weight loss though it is often not a significant amount.  Given that most fat is "light and fluffy" the biggest difference noted is in contour and overall shape and improved fitting of clothing.  Weight differences are, as stated above, usually inconsequential.

good luck

Delio Ortegon, MD
San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.