Weight loss before lipo?

I have stomach lipo scheduled for 3 months from now but recently I have just really started back on my diet and excercise routine. I suspect I will now be losing significant weight. I know in the future I may gain it back as my lifestyle turns sedentary again so I'm wondering if my fat cells are finite and are just expanding and contracting with weight gain and loss. if I have the surgery at a lower weight will it still be as beneficial as if I'm at my maximum weight? I'm muscular 5'6" 185lbs.

Doctor Answers 9

Weight and liposuction

Thanks for your inquiry, it is best to have liposuction as the finishing touches to your contour goals.  Liposuction does cause a permanent reduction in the number of fat cells, but the remaining cells can expand quite a bit causing the same contour issues.  Good Luck.

Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 197 reviews

Weight changes and Liposuction

The results of liposuction are very weight dependent. Most patients weight fluctuate 10-15 lbs. I like to do liposuction on them when they are on the chubbier side (but not heavy or obese), as after surgery you will not be able to exercise. If you gain weight after liposuction, the fat comes back in treated and non treated areas and will negatively influence your results. The results are more dramatic when a patient does his or  her part and looses a small amount of weight during recovery, then maintains that weight. You should have your liposuction as you are in the process of continuing to loose weight.

Hayley Brown, MD, FACS
Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 88 reviews

Weight loss before Liposuction?

Thank you for your question. Liposuction is a very powerful technique in the right hands, and can have dramatic results in a variety of areas and a in a variety of patients.  That said, the ideal liposuction candidate has localized fat deposits and quality overlying skin without significant excess skin or skin damage.  Fat can then be removed to a]strategically sculpt the body and accentuate feminine curves.  The skin then retracts over the new shape to give the final result. The closer you are to your ideal weight before surgery the better your result will be. That said, you definitely have to choose your surgeon correctly and make sure that he/she has the training and experience to meet your goals with absolute safety.  A key quality indicator is Board Certification by the American Board of Plastic Surgery.  Don’t settle for less than a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon with specialized expertise in this procedure.

Carolina Restrepo, MD
Colombia Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Ideal Liposuction Candidates

The ideal liposuction candidate is healthy and has reached a stable weight (with 15 lbs. of goal). Patients who are actively pursuing weight loss are encouraged to delay surgery until they are at or near their goal and have demonstrated the ability to maintain that weight.

It is important to remember that weight gain and loss is the results of swelling or shrinking of individual cells. Typically SAL (liposuction) will achieve a 70% reduction in a particular area. The remaining adipocytes or fat cells retain their ability to fluctuate with your weight. Significant changes post op may (although not necessarily) compromise your result.

As always, discuss your concerns with a board certified plastic surgeon.

Donovan Rosas, MD
Kissimmee Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Let the right doctor help you

Far more important than deciding if liposuction or a BBL is for you is the skill and experience of your plastic surgeon. Choose your surgeon rather than the technique and let him explain why one technique may be better than another and if you need a tummy tuck. Many board certified plastic surgeons provide a free first time consult and you should take advantage of that! See the below link on some suggestions on finding the most qualified Plastic Surgeon for you!

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 154 reviews

Liposuction - when to lose weight.

Thank you for asking about your liposuction.

  • It is a good idea to have liposuction when you are near your stable weight.
  • If you lose weight now, have liposuction and gain back the weight - it will return to the area of liposuction.
  • If you think you can keep the weight off, have liposuction when you still have a few pounds to lose -
  • That way, you will lose the weight afterwards and fat will not appear in new areas.

Always see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. Best wishes  - Elizabeth Morgan MD PHD FACS

Elizabeth Morgan, MD, PhD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

Postpone liposuction during weight loss until that process is complete.

If you're actively losing weight I would suggest that you complete this before pursuing liposuction. It may turn out that some or all of the areas presently require treatment might not need so

Vincent N. Zubowicz, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 35 reviews


It is always best to achieve a stable weight prior to undergoing liposuction. After your recovery period, it is important to establish a program of healthy eating and exercise to maintain the results. If you adopt a sedentary lifestyle, you will ultimately be disappointed with the longevity of the surgical outcome.

Bryan G. Forley, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Weight loss before lipo

Thanks for your question. My advice is very simple. I would wait to see what you look and feel like after you have naturally lost the weight. You may surprise yourself and not want to undergo liposuction at that point. With that said, fat reduction procedures,whether surgical or non-surgical, decrease the number of fat cells in the treated area. If someone gains weight after the fat reduction procedure, these fat cells just hypertrophy or "plump" up. Hope that helps. Good luck.

Mehdi K. Mazaheri, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 32 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.