Is Calf Reduction Surgery Safe?

i heard about this, whats the procedure? is it safe and how painful is it? i heard some people also get liposucton done on the calves again how safe is it, how painful and is it worth it? whats the best methods for reducing leg calves? i heard calf reduction can be very dangerous if done wrong yet i want this badly but i don't know what type of surgery i need and how effective it'll be so plz help, thx

Doctor Answers 10

Is calf reduction surgery safe?

Reducting the size of ankles (commonly referred to as "cankles") is a safe and effective procedure if done with liposuction by a board certified plastic surgeon. While all surgeries carry some element of risk, this procedure is certainly one of the safest and results are usually wonderful.

Sacramento Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 110 reviews

Liposuction of the calves is a safe procedure

Liposuction of the calve and ankle area is not an uncommon procedure and when performed by a board certified Plastic surgeon is very safe.  I have not seen any complications from this procedure.  It can be done for asymmetry or as a cosmetic procedure for enlarged calves.   It will also help for those who have difficulty fitting into certain types of footwear such as ski boots.  Find someone who has experience with the procedure.

Robert M. Jensen, MD
Medford Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 40 reviews

Calf Reduction

Thank you for your question. Typically, large calves are from a large muscle, and not fat. I like to avoid this area as swelling is more profound, the risks are higher, and a smooth texture is not always achieved. Safety is only determined after a look at all risk factors, including your health. I hope this helps!

Vivek Bansal, MD
Danville Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Liposculpture for Calf Reduction

Liposuction/ liposculpture is an effective and safe way to reduce the size of the calves and improve lower leg and ankle contour caused by abnormal distribution of fat which can be unresponsive to diet and exercise alone. Recovery time can be longer than liposuction to other areas since gravity promotes swelling. Because this procedure requires delicacy, it is best to have a consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon who is knowledgeable and experienced in the specific techniques for this part of the body.

Michelle Copeland, MD, DMD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Calf reduction surgery is safe

Calf reduction can be safe and effective. Many options exist: 1. liposuction 2. gastrocnemius muscle resection 3. radio frequency nerve ablation (similar to no-tox for the face) 4. gastrocnemius neurectomy. Non-surgical options also exist - botox calf injections ( works just as well as botox for facial slimming). Each procedure has its benefits and drawbacks, with gastrocnemius muscle resection having the greatest morbidity and complications. If interested, you should consult a plastic surgeon and see which option is best and safest for you. 

Perry Liu, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Calf reduction surgery

If you are asking about liposuction, this is possible.  I would not recommend any other procedue to debulk the calf muscles.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Calf Reduction Sugery

Calf reduction surgery is not as common as breast implants or tummy tucks.  However, there are some patients that would benefit from liposuction of the lower legs / calves if they are good candidates.  Without pictures or examining you, it is impossible to know if you are a good candidate.  Good luck.

David Shafer, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 75 reviews

Calf reduction surgery

Surgery below the knee can have much higher risks, complications, and unsatisfactory results. That is why it is not a common part of most plastic surgical practices. I have no personal experience, however, I would be extremely wary, as this area is very difficult to treat with reductional surgery. 

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


Circumferential liposuction of the calves and ankles ( the Boot Surgery ) is a demanding liposuction procedure that requires a lot more of an artistic eye and patience then some other procedures. In good hands and when performed on the properly selected patients, results are extremely pleasing and very, very safe.

Ahmet R. Karaca, MD
Birmingham Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Calf reduction

Llposuction calf reduction is possible but the results depend on the quantity of fat and the quality of the skin. Calf reduction via muscle resection is more commonly performed in the Pacific Rim but not is not popular in the USA.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 81 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.