close up of a woman's waist and her hand pinching her fat

Liposuction is among the most popular forms of plastic surgery. It can be a great way to remove unwanted fat from certain parts of the body, leading to a boost in self-esteem and self-image.

Liposuction surgically removes fat from the body, and it can be a great method of getting rid of fat deposits that do not go away with weight loss. This leads many to wonder whether it leads to weight loss.

While it can help you reshape your body, it’s not necessarily a weight loss method in and of itself. Below, we’ll break down the connection between liposuction and weight loss to help you figure out if the procedure is the right means to meet your goals.

How does liposuction work?

Liposuction can remove fat from various parts of the body and is commonly performed in areas like the abdomen, upper arms, thighs, and love handles.

Liposuction requires either local anesthesia or general anesthesia depending on the treatment area. Then, the surgeon will make a small puncture in the skin and insert a cannula to suction fat from the body.

Immediately after the procedure, you may need to wear compression garments to reduce swelling, and ensure proper healing.

Not everyone can undergo liposuction. You’ll have to talk over whether the procedure is safe for you with a medical professional. Usually, in order to undergo liposuction, you need to be in good health overall and preferably be within 30% of your ideal weight. Having good skin elasticity and muscle tone are also important factors for achieving an ideal result.

It mainly targets fat deposits that may be related to genetics, such as fat under the chin or arms. It can help reshape your body and give you results you are unable to get through diet and exercise alone.

Does liposuction permanently remove fat?

Yes and no.

All forms of liposuction remove fat cells from a targeted area. Fat cells removed via liposuction are removed permanently. However, that does not mean fat cannot return after the procedure.

If you gain weight after liposuction, remaining fat cells can grow in the treated areas. A small amount of weight gain will likely not diminish your results noticeably. However, if you gain considerable weight after, you may notice increased fat deposits in places you previously did not tend to gain weight. This is because the ratio of fat cells in your body has been permanently altered and the fat will be noticed in areas with proportionally higher numbers of cells.

What’s the connection between liposuction and weight loss?

After the procedure, you may lose a small amount of weight due to the fat removed. Usually, this is only between five and ten pounds. It is possible to regain this weight after the procedure.

Liposuction is not considered a method for overall weight loss or a treatment for obesity. Again, if you’re not within 30% of your ideal body weight, you may not be an idea candidate for liposuction.

Liposuction is a targeted treatment that focuses on specific areas of the body. While it can change your body type significantly, it won’t yield major weight loss in and of itself. Losing weight comes down to diet and exercise. And in some cases, weight loss surgeries such as gastric bypass.

How do I maintain my results?

First, listen to your surgeon. They can give you advice on how to recover safely from liposuction and adopt a healthy lifestyle afterwards to keep your results intact. Your surgeons may also be able to provide general advice about adopting a healthy lifestyle overall.

Liposuction results will only last if you maintain a healthy weight. Big weight gain after liposuction will make you gain weight all over your body. Keep up a good diet and exercise routine after the procedure to ensure your weight stays steady.

Keep in mind that you cannot immediately return to a regular exercise regimen after liposuction. After the procedure, most people will need to wait at least two weeks before returning to a regular routine. Swelling may take a few weeks to or months to subside.

The length of your recovery depends on your personal health history and the precise technique they used. Talk over recovery with your surgeon and follow their instructions carefully.


There is a small connection between liposuction and weight loss in that you can expect to lose a small amount of weight during the process. However, it is not an obesity treatment and will not yield major weight loss. In fact, you may have to lose weight before you are the ideal candidate for liposuction.

Liposuction is more about body contouring. It can help reshape areas like the thighs, stomach, and under the chin to give you a slimmer, more toned appearance. However, you can only maintain your results as long as you maintain a healthy weight. After undergoing the procedure, you’ll need to adopt a healthy diet and exercise regularly.

Ready to get started? Dr. Leif Rogers is an Ivy League-educated board-certified plastic surgeon with experience in a variety of cosmetic procedures. If you’re considering liposuction, reach out here and someone will be in touch.

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