1. How much scarring can I expect?
Scarring is usual minimal because very small incisions are used to perform liposuction. The degree of scarring depends on the surgeon’s technique and on the patient’s genetic tendency to scar. Incisions are usually made in inconspicuous places on the body so they are not noticeable.
2. Does liposuction produce visible scars?
Very small incisions are made to perform liposuction with microcannulas. Scars are small and will fade and disappear over time. When large cannulas are used or on patients with darker pigmented skin, visible scars are more likely.
3. What types of scars occur with liposuction?
Scars are possible with liposuction but they are usually very small and strategically located so they cannot easily be seen. In addition to regular scars, dyschromia can occur. Dyschromia is a discolored spot on the skin.
4. Why do incision sites become darkly pigmented in some patients?
Injuries to the skin, including surgical incisions, can produce inflammation which results in hyper-pigmentation. Patients with darker skin pigmentation will experience darker, more persistent post-inflammatory hyper-pigmentation. In lightly pigmented skin, hyper pigmentation usually disappears in six months or less. In darker skin, it may last for 4 years or more.
5. What causes hypo-pigmentation or loss of pigmentation at incision sites?
Trauma to an incision site can cause loss of pigmentation. Trauma can occur as a result of the repeated in and out movement of the cannula if the fatty tissue is tough to penetrate. Fat can become tough when liposuction has been performed on the same area before and fibrous scarring has occurred. This scarred connective tissue is more difficult to penetrate with the cannula and may require more force and more strokes with the cannula to perform liposuction. The extra friction can injure or kill the pigment cells around the incision, resulting in hypo-pigmentation.