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Liposuction and Liposculpture: What’s the Difference?

Submitted by Dr. Bernabe Vazquez on June 1, 2021
liposuction and liposculpture; What's the difference

Are liposuction and liposculpture the same?

Our board certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Bernabe Vazquez, has performed hundreds of liposuction and liposculpture procedures over the course of his 30+ year career.  You may have heard of liposuction and liposculpture, but may not be sure of the difference between the two. Though similar, these are actually two different procedures. Each is uniquely suited for achieving transformative goals in different areas of the body. For example, if you want to remove a small amount of fat and tighten up the skin under your chin, liposculpture would be the better option. If you were looking to target a larger fat deposit — such as your thighs, stomach or back — liposuction would be best. 

Fat deposits collected from both procedures can be reused. Often, plastic surgeons will add fat removed from target areas to other parts of the body in an effort to reshape the body. These larger fat deposits are sometimes reused in a Brazilian Butt Lift, to fill out the buttocks and hips for a more appealing shape and contour.

Both liposuction and liposculpture are commonly performed in combination with other surgical procedures, such as a tummy tuck, BBL or Mommy Makeover. 

What’s recovery like after these procedures?

liposuction and liposculpture; What's the difference

Post surgery, you can anticipate very similar post-op care and recovery with both liposuction or liposculpture procedures. Liposculpture is typically designed to remove smaller fat deposits, generally yielding a quicker recovery time than traditional liposuction. Liposuction is used to remove larger fat deposits. 

Most patients should plan to take a few days off from work, and be prepared to limit physical activity for 2-3 weeks or more. Swelling and bruising are common, and last for approximately 4-6 weeks, depending on the technique and amount of fat being removed. To alleviate this, post-op patients should wear a compression garment for up to 6 weeks to minimize swelling and pain, accelerate healing, and reduce the likelihood of seromas.

Am I a good candidate for liposuction or liposculpture?

liposuction and liposculpture; What's the difference

When a healthy diet and exercise aren’t getting you the results you’re looking for, both liposuction and liposculpture are effective surgical tools to target unwanted fat and improve body contour. Ideally, liposuction and liposculpture patients should be close to their goal weight, lead a consistently healthy lifestyle, and be non-smokers (at least leading up to and immediately following surgery). 

Neither of these procedures are long term weight loss solutions, or replacements for eating healthy and exercising regularly. If you’re in poor health from unrelated medical conditions, or are currently carrying too much extra weight — you may not be a good candidate for lipo procedures.

Do you have more questions about liposuction or liposculpture? Schedule a free surgical consultation with Dr. Bernabe Vazquez, to discuss your goals and options. Dr. Vazquez is a board certified plastic surgeon with more than 30 years of experience helping others just like you achieve the look they crave, safely.