How Much Fat Can the Liposuction Remove Safely in One Session?

What is the maximum fat that can be remove by lipo Dr at a time.

Doctor Answers 10

How much fat that can be safely removed at 1 liposuction depends on several factors.

In healthy patients who weigh over 200 lbs, then 5-7 liters is not uncommon to be removed safely at 1 liposuction.  In a 100-110 lb patient, that number might be 1.5 liters.  If the liposuction is done under local anesthesia by the tumescent technique with the patients awake which is now the standard, then it is by far safer and other factors come into play such as amount of lidocaine injected, size and number of the areas, vital signs during the surgery,  liver condition, or other health issues etc. Always see at least 2-3 docs for consultations when considering liposuctions and trust the doc you finally choose. 

Beverly Hills Dermatologic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

How much fat can be removed in one session of liposuction

As Dr Yuan has mentioned, our society has adopted 5 liters (5000 cc) as an arbitrary number to distigtuish "higher volume" liposuction. This implies that it carries greater risk and should be performed with a higher degree of concern. It is not an absolute number. To the best of my knowledge up to 18 liters (approx 40 pounds) have been removed in one sitting. However, this is extremely rare and should likely be performed in a hospital setting.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 72 reviews

Liposuction Safety

Your question implies only one facet of Liposuction safety. With standard superwet or conservative tumescent formulas, 3500 cc of fat removal is almost always safe to do as an outpatient. If one removes over 5000 cc of fat (and amounts up to 10,000 cc have been removed), the patient must be observed overnight in the hospital with blood for a transfusion available (though rarely used). Between these two amounts requires judgement at the time of surgery. A different infusion formula, using different amounts of the drugs used (epinephrine and Lidocaine), will change these amounts as the anesthesia becomes the limiting factor. There are many non Plastic Surgeons using formulas that push the safety of these drugs. Ask about experience and the method used when meeting with your surgeon.

Robert T. Buchanan, MD
Highlands Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Safety First

The general recommendations for liposuction vary, whether the procedure is being done as an out patient or with an overnight stay.  The general recommendation for out patient liposuction volume is to limit it to 5 liters of total aspirate; that is, the total amount of material that is aspirated from the patient.  If the patient is staying for a 23 hour or overnight stay, where intravenous fluids can be managed and urine output assessed, then the safety limit is in the 7 liter range.   It is important not to push your surgeon to take too much at any one sitting because fluid shifts and electrolyte imbalances and low blood pressure can be threatening to your health and even to your life.  It is better to have two stages and accomplish all of your goals safely with a several month rest period in between, if that’s what it takes to get you to your goal.  Talk about safety, talk about recovery, talk about volume of reduction and goals with your Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. 

Richard A. D’Amico, MD, FACS
Englewood Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Liposuction limit

There may be a limit that one can safely and legally remove with liposuction in an out-patient setting. This is usually about 5000 ccs. However, volume is not the only, nor necessarily the most important determinant of safety in liposuction. The formula and volume of tumescent-like fluid that is infiltrated and the total surface area of the regions to be suctioned are also  at least as important. Liposuction should be planned to be a safe procedure and it is always the better part of valor to etiher suction less or to perfrom the procedure in the hospital with experienced anesthesiologists.

Robin T.W. Yuan, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Outpatient: 5000 cc's

When performing liposuction, safety should be everyone’s first priority.For this reason, we never exceed a volume of more than 5,000 cc. of fatty aspirate when this procedure is performed on an outpatient basis.

When this number is exceeded, the complication rate rises dramatically.Under these circumstances, massive fluid shifts may occur which increase the potential for cardiac and pulmonary complications.

How Much Fat Can Liposuction Safely Remove

Outpatient Liposuction - No more than 5 liters = guidelines for most states regardless of whether it is laser lipo, ultrasonic lipo or standard liposuction

Liposuction Limits - depends on State and Safety

5000 cc's (5 liters) is the guideline limit for outpatient liposuction for many states including California. For smaller patients like yourself with more areas for liposuction removing less fat may be safer. This would probably apply to you as you only weigh 115 pounds. Make sure you have a consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon

Liposuction guidelines

The standard of care in the U.S. has become a maximum of 5 liters of fat (supranatant fluid) to be removed at one time. If many more liters are removed, then the body may suffer fluid shifts and there is a greater potential for complications.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

Liposuction volume

While some surgeons have performed high volume liposuction of sometimes up to 10 or more liters of fat removal, most surgeons limit it to 5 liters in an outpatient setting.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

The MAXIMUM amount of Fat removable by Liposuction...Safely

In a healthy person without risk factors, up to 5 Liters (5,000 ml, 1.1 gallons or 4.4 quarts) can be liposuctioned in an out patient setting. Once larger volumes of tumescent solution are infused and or larger volumes of fat are liposuctioned it is safer to admit the patient for observation and intravenous fluids administration for 1-3 days depending on the patient's status.

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 101 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.