Liposuction, also known as liposculpture, is a plastic surgery procedure that involves the removal of unwanted fatty deposits in the face and/or neck. Natural elements, such as aging and genetics, often cause fat to congregate in the area under the chin and along the jawline. This buildup of fat can decrease definition for an appearance that masks youthful angles. Removing excess fat with liposuction can help patients restore the angular appearance of their jawline, get rid of a “double chin,” and achieve an improved contour around the face and neck.
Benefits of Liposuction
Liposuction in the face and neck typically results in a more rejuvenated, youthful appearance. The definition of facial angles that have softened over time can be vastly improved following the removal of stubborn fat. Patients who elect to undergo liposuction typically benefit from:
- More refined angles around the neck
- Improved visibility of the jawline
- Decreased roundness under the chin
- Improved symmetry of facial features
Candidates for Liposuction
Ideal candidates for liposuction have a stable overall body weight and good skin elasticity (the ability of the skin to snap back). Patients who lack skin elasticity are, unfortunately, not considered great candidates for this type of procedure, as the ultimate results rely on the skin “shrinking” or snapping back into place. For individuals whose skin demonstrates too much laxity to qualify for liposuction alone, Dr. John Hilinski may also recommend a neck lift and/or facelift procedure. These treatments can eliminate excess skin and tighten remaining tissues in conjunction with fat removal via liposuction, helping to create an optimal outcome.
The Liposuction Procedure
Liposuction is often performed under local anesthesia with or without oral sedation, allowing patients to remain comfortable and relaxed throughout the course of treatment. During the procedure, tiny incisions are first made discreetly in (or near) the treatment areas. Excess fat is then carefully extracted using very thin instruments to ensure the resulting contour is even. Unlike liposculpture involving areas like the abdomen and thighs, liposuction of the face and neck involves the removal of small but strategic volumes of fat.
This versatile procedure can be performed alone or in combination with other facial plastic surgeries, such as a neck lift, facelift, midface lift, rhinoplasty, or chin implants. In most cases, patients are able to return home the same day of treatment under the care and supervision of a friend or family member.
Liposuction is typically a safe and routine surgery, so the risks involved are generally the same as most other surgical treatments. Although they are very rare, complications in anesthesia are possible. Other risks may include swelling, bruising, temporary changes in sensation, or contour irregularities.
Recovery from Liposuction
The recovery time after liposuction is generally around one week, with mild bruising and soreness in the involved regions. These postoperative symptoms generally resolve relatively quickly, and many patients report feeling well enough to return to non-strenuous activities in as soon as two or three days. Specific recovery and healing times may vary by patient and whether the procedure was performed in combination with other cosmetic surgeries, but generally, the final results should gradually become more apparent as swelling continues to resolve in the targeted area(s).
Dr. John Hilinski has either authored or reviewed and approved this content.