How Many Areas Can You Treat in One Liposuction Session?

I know there is a limit on a safe amount (about 5 liters) to be taken out in every session of Liposuction. However, does it matter how many areas it comes from? For instance, can you do waist, abs, hips and back/flanks in one session?

Doctor Answers 18

How many areas can be treated in 1 Liposuction session

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Generally, 3-4 areas can be done in the average patient at 1 liposuction surgery which would cover the abdomen, hips and sides. The recommendation (not absolute limit) of 5 liters does not apply, often because the amount of local anesthetic of lidocaine tumescent solution to anesthetize the areas becomes the limiting factor, since you want to stay under 55 mg/kg lidocaine concentration; and on a thin patient, it still takes a lot of lidocaine to anesthetize multiple areas, so you may only get 2 liters of fat out and still maxed out the lido dose. Whereas a large patient may get 6 liters of fat out of the abdomen alone and still be under the lidocaine maximum. Your doctor will be able to let you know what is safe for your body size and number of areas to be liposuctioned.

It is better to be safe and do 5-6 areas over 2 surgeries @ a week apart than to try to overdo it all in only 1 surgery. Most liposuctions cost about $5-6000 per surgery when doing a few areas at once.

Good Luck!

Beverly Hills Dermatologic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Liposuction Limits

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Yes, the number of areas really is not that much of a concern as far as safety goes.  The limit is 5 L for outpatient liposuction procedures.  Now having said that, the more areas you have treated the more areas that will be sore.  So you have to think about that as well.

Hope that helps.

Farbod Esmailian, MD
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 88 reviews

Limits to number of liposuction treatment areas?

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Liposuction is essentially intended for LOCALIZED fatty depsits. With that in mind if you are considering liposuction for more than 2 or 3 areas, you may derive better resutls from weight loss. The number of areas to be treated is the result of reviewing several factors including volume of fat (5 liters is a typical upper limit), overall health, age, skin laxity, etc. However, these are generalizations and there is great variablity in the surgeon's choice and the patient's tolerances.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 reviews

Outpatient: 5000 cc's

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}
When performing liposuction, safety should be everyone’s first priority.For this reason, we never exceed a volume of more than 5000 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 can occur which increase the potential for cardiac and pulmonary complications.

It’s important to realize that the number of areas treated has no direct impact on safety as long no more than 5,000 cc. of fatty aspirate is removed.From a practical standpoint, most surgeons usually limit the number of areas treated to three or four at a given setting.

Liposuction Safety

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}
Liposuction is one of the most popular plastic surgery procedures.  However, many surgeons underestimate the complexity of liposuction and it can be dangerous if done by the wrong non Board Certified physician.  Liposuction should be limited by volume.  Regardless of the number of areas, surgeons should limit the volume of aspirate to <5 liters.  It is also critical to limit the amount of tumescent fluid introduced before liposuction.  Serious complications from liposuction can result from introducing too much tumescent fluid or removing too much aspirate.  

John L. Burns Jr., MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 56 reviews

Limits associated with liposuction

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

In addition to the amount of fat removed, there is a limit to how much anesthetic is used. This differs from patient to patient based on weight, age and prescription and non-prescription medications that are taken every day as may affect the metabolism of the anesthetic. The surgeon examines you and evaluates the amount of fat in each area that interests you for liposuction, and takes the other variables into consideration. It might be possible for you to have all those areas done, but you should be able to find out with certainty in your consultation.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Liposuction safety and areas of treatment

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

For outpatient liposuction, 5 Liters of fat is considered the maximum amount that can be safely removed in one session. During that session, several different areas can be addressed, from one area up to four or five. However, if a patient is requesting or needs many areas (>5), one must give serious consideration to the patient perhaps losing more weight prior to the liposuction surgery. Some patients are under the false impression the liposuction is a means for them to lose weight; this is not true. The goal of liposuction is to improve contour, not to lower weight.

Please consult with a board certified plastic surgeon prior to considering liposuction.

William Bruno, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 409 reviews

Liposuction areas

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Yes, you should be able to safely undergo liposuction of multiple areas in one sitting providing that you are staying under the limit of 5 liters of aspirate (material suctioned out). As my colleagues have already mentioned liposuction is a great tool of contouring small areas that are resistant to weight loss. It is not uiseful as a means of losing weight. Good luck, /nsn.

Liposuction is for contouring and not weight loss

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Liposuction is ideal for healthy patients who are stable in their weight and exercise habits and have a localized area of fatty collection that has been resistant to their diet and exercise. It is not meant for weight loss. 5 liters is the standard limit for minimizing your risks. However, that does not mean that you should take out as much as possible just because you are having surgery. Contour deformity which is difficult to correct becomes more common with larger/wider areas and with the more areas you treat. Usually focusing on 2-3 areas that bother you the most will keep the surgery safe, the recovery easy, minimize postop pain and give you more optimal results. The length of surgery should also be considered. Rank the areas you are concerned about and discuss with your board certified plastic surgeon which ones will benefit the most from liposuction. If your intention is to lost weight, then consider a nutritionist and trainer first. Liposuction is very effective and extremely safe when done with realistic goals.

Bahram Ghaderi, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon

Liposuction- How many areas safely?

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Assuming you have maximized your attempts at weight loss with diet and exercise then it may make sense for you to proceed. The areas you mention-waist, abs, hips, back/flanks can be treated in one session in some patients . If your are healthy then up to 5 liters of aspirate, may be safe to do as an out-patient procedure.

John E. Gross, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon

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.