Liposuction Results

What kind of results can I expect from liposuction? Can I lose inches from the waist or thigh areas? I know they say you can only lose a few pounds through lipo, but I don't know how that translates to the body -- is my belly pooch a few pounds?

What are the typical results?

Doctor Answers 8

Result oriented liposuction

In general there is 2.2 pounds per liter of fat removed.      In general you are 50% of the way there at 6 weeks and 80% at 3 months.    When large areas are treated with liposuction there is always some degree of fluid retention.   Liposuction is really more about how much fat is left behind and not how much fat is removed. You can remove all of the fat and it will not look very good. 

Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Liposuction results

The best answer or advise is to see in person a boarded plastic surgeon in your area. At the visit you will see photographic examples of results than you can determine if liposuction is for you. Regards.

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 173 reviews

Liposuction can cause a decrease in circumference

When liposuction is performed, you see the fat leaving via a tube. As fat is removed, the vertical height that is reduced on profile might be rather significant, especially when the swelling goes away. The circumference does not lose the same number of inch reduction because it is a circular line around the body that varies similar to a circumference being more than three times (pi, the mathematical figure) the diameter. So if the diameter of the circle decreases (by losing volume of fat via liposuction) then the circumference (waist line or thigh circumference) may decrease by a multiple of that reduction.

Your result will depend on how much fat can be removed and that can only be determined by an examination. Some people will decrease a full clothing size or more, while others may only go down a half inch or less.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

Results from Liposuctioning

Liposuctioning is not a weight loss procedure, it is a body contouring procedure. Although most patients lose weight it is designed to reshape of defat. The limiting factors in the results are the amount and looseness of the skin and the ability of the skin to contract.

It is very important to be realistic about what can be done and what the positives and negatives are regarding liposuctioning.

John P. Stratis, MD
Harrisburg Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Liposuction changes your shape.

It is not so much about inches or pounds, but changing your shape. For example, if you have excess fat in your thighs and are "pear-shaped", after liposuction you will be "apple-shaped". Look at before/after photos to see examples of this on web sites of surgeons in your area.

Toby Mayer, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Liposuction is for reshaping, not weight loss

In order to get a realistic answer to your question you would need to see a plastic surgeon, but here are a few general guidelines. Fat cells are genetically "programmed" to behave differently in different parts of the body, as though some of it is for emergency reserves. The fat in these areas is very resistant to change with diet and exercise, so by removing them with liposuction the body can be permanently reshaped.

The one caveat is that if you have, say, 3 areas like this, but you only treat 2 of them, the one remaining may grow even more. If all the disproportionate areas are taken care of, the body will distribute fat evenly.

Richard Baxter, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

You can lose inches with liposuction.


It's the inches that matter for a great liposuction result, not so much the number of pounds removed. Look at pictures on RealSelf and on my website. We often get dramatic results.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Formula for translating inches lost with liposuction

The typical abdominal panniculus removed during routine tummy tucks in an ideal candidate rarely weighs over 2-3 pounds.

Unfortunately there is no formula to translate lost weight into inches reduced.

Many other factors go into determining your clothe's size and this includes your bone structure which will not be effected by liposuction surgery.

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.