What are the risks of revision liposuction?
Revision liposuction comes with the same risks as the initial liposuction procedure. All risks should be considered carefully before undergoing any surgery.
Revision liposuction risks can vary from simple scarring and contour irregularities to pulmonary embolism.
Surgical scars are permanent but the incisions are usually made in inconspicuous, easily concealed locations. Scars can be mitigated by proper bandaging, resting and the use of ointments and creams.
Swelling in the surgical area can result in numbness and tingling because of increased pressure on nerves. Seroma (fluid filled pockets) can appear as swelling after a liposuction procedure. A seroma can be relieved by draining it.
Redness, streaking, tenderness, chills, fever, or vomiting can be signs of an infection. A doctor may prescribe drugs after surgery to prevent infection.
During revision liposuction there is a possibility of organ damage. If the doctor is probing under the surface of the skin, removing fat, there is a chance of the cannula coming into contact with an organ. With revision liposuction, the surgeon must make small, precise strokes with the cannula since there is less fat due to a previous surgery.
A pulmonary embolism could result from the movement and blocking of the lungs by small pieces of fat dislodged by the liposuction procedure. The greatest risk for this complication exists within the first 3 days of the completion of the procedure. If a patient experiences difficulty breathing, emergency help should be sought immediately.
No deaths related to tumescent liposuction have ever been reported due to the use of local anesthesia, rather than general anesthesia. For this reason, tumescent liposuction is a safer alternative to conventional liposuction. Tumescent anesthesia can also help soften fat deposits that have become firm due to a previous surgery. Therefore fat is easier to remove.
Generally, patients that are not in good overall health should not consider or participate in elective medical procedures. Revision liposuction risks increase with the number of concurrent procedures performed. Multiple revision liposuction procedures are not advised because of the development of scar tissue. With each subsequent procedure, there is a greater risk of irregularities or a lumpy appearance.
The best circumstances to reduce revision liposuction risks is to seek out trained and experienced surgeons that use tumescent anesthesia in outpatient facilities.