By: Dr. David Amron
Through my years of experience I have perfected the art form and skill essential to liposuction. My unique method not only provides patients with exceptional results, it also reduces downtime and recovery.
What is the Dr. Amron Method?
I use a tumescent liposuction technique that requires no general anesthesia. Not using general anesthesia reduces recovery time, and this mostly has to do with the fact that general anesthesia in and of itself tends to make patients feel lousy after surgery. Patients many times wake up feeling very groggy, nauseous and lethargic from the general anesthetic medications. It usually takes the rest of the day to start feeling better, and many times it can go on for many days after the surgery.
By using general anesthesia versus local anesthesia, I find that patients feel great right after the surgery. I don’t use a lot of sedating medications during the surgery, and, in fact, patients are conscious during my liposuction procedure. All that the patient is given before the surgery is a little bit of Valium to relax. Most of my patients feel great almost immediately and are able to walk 30 min after surgery.
The ability to move around so soon after the liposuction procedure aids in the recovery and makes it safer. The fact that patients are not just lying still for hours on end, the fact that they can move around and walk is safer after liposuction. because there is a much, much reduced risk of clot formation.
The day after surgery, patients feel very clean and very good after local anesthesia. Many times, general anesthesia has more nauseating effects even the day after surgery.
From the standpoint of reduced pain, bleeding and bruising, using general anesthesia is generally much, much better. As a surgeon, you have to stay only in the areas of the body where the local anesthesia was administered, and that is in the layer of fat. I don’t have the luxury of poking or jabbing into the muscle. The muscle is not numb under local anesthesia, so if I touch the muscle, the patient will feel it right away. When patients are under general anesthesia, they are essentially unconscious. I would say virtually every time the surgeon is inevitably jabbing into the muscle with the cannula.
When a patient is unconscious, there is a positioning disadvantage for the surgeon, as well. You cannot really get around curved areas of the body well with
a patient under general anesthesia with straight cannulas and instruments. So, without the surgeon or patient even realizing, the muscle is being jabbed during liposuction. This causes a lot of discomfort, pain and bruising after liposuction. Literally, the patient has been beaten up with the cannula, and the muscle has been jabbed or poked which causes bleeding, bruising and much more.
My particular technique is a very clean way of doing liposuction. I am only staying in the layer of fat and very precisely bringing it down and contouring it; therefore, not only does using local anesthesia reduce discomfort after liposuction, it also gives better results.
What Else Aids in Better Recovery?
I strongly prefer not to close the incisions after liposuction, it really helps to promote recovery by allowing the fluid to leak out of the body during the first 12-24 hours. Surgeons that suture up the incision points immediately after surgery are holding in all the fluid, thusly increasing bruising and pain. By draining for 12-24 hours, it helps to reduce swelling and bruising and promotes recovery. Incisions heal better when they are allowed to heal naturally.
The fluid that leaks from the incisions after liposuction is a light pink, watery solution that consists primarily of tumescent fluid and a small amount of blood. Tumescent fluid consists of saline, which is essentially sterile water, a diluted amount of Lidocaine, a diluted amount of epinephrine, and sodium bicarbonate to buffer the pH. All of these components impact recovery.
Directly after surgery, the nurse and surgical tech massage the fluid out of the patient, milking the excess out of the patient for about 15 min. Directly after this, the patient is put into compression garments.
The compression garments role is two fold: applying necessary pressure and contouring. During the first 24 hours, it helps reduce bruising by putting pressure on the treated areas. After that, it helps the tissue and skin conform back in more of an even way. I have my patients wear compression garments 24 hours a day for 10 days following liposuction surgery and then12 hours a day for another 10 days. I don’t feel it is imperative for patients to wear the compression garments any longer than that, as I don’t think it will do anything to add to the results.
The day of surgery, patients are advised to take it easy after the liposuction procedure. They will be able to move around and are encouraged to do so. Movement is encouraged to help the fluid to circulate and prevent the collection of fluids.
The day after surgery patients are advised to walk at least 2 miles to help their circulation. The walk should be gentle and within the person’s comfort level.
No pain medication is required for 90 percent of my patients during recovery from liposuction. An over the counter anti-inflammatory is sufficient in most cases.
When Will I See Results from Lipo?
It is common for patients to be anxious to see the results from liposuction. Generally, when I see patients a week after surgery it’s not to look at results whatsoever; it is too soon for patient to be looking for results at that point. I pretty much guarantee all my patients that 3 weeks after surgery they will be the at least the size they were before surgery. I know that sounds weird – why would a person be larger after liposuction? Some people that are very thin, have a thin fat layer. And, many times, the swelling after liposuction can make the patient appear larger than they were before the surgery.
There are 2 aspects to the improvement to the patient after liposuction. One is the reduction in the layer of fat. The other is a retraction and conforming of the tissue that takes months to finally occur. In that process, there is edema and swelling that continues slowly then improves. The skin will continue to form to the new shape created by the liposuction surgery for 6-12 months.
At the 3 month point, patients will see about 60-75 percent of the final results. At the 6 months mark, usually 80-90 percent of the final results can be seen. The 1 year mark is when you see really the final, final results of the liposuction procedure. It takes 6-12 months for the final results because of that continued remodeling and pull back of the tissue that occurs.
All in all, body contouring with liposuction can be very successful with the right surgeon and the right patient. Patients who are dedicated to proper healing and actively engage in positive activities will have better results.
Contact Dr. David Amron’s Los Angeles office at 424.394.1610 to schedule a free liposuction consultation.