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A Breast Reduction using Liposuction?

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Yesterday I performed a Breast Reduction using Liposuction only. To my surprise, the OR nursing staff was unaware this was possible. So I figured if they were unaware it was possible, most people probably are. So lets talk about it.

Why it works: Well, breasts are normally made up of glandular milk producing breast tissue AND fat. In fact, for many women, the breast is a preferred fat storage site. So, we are able to use liposuction to remove the fatty component of the breast. This can be done with one or two very small incisions instead of the typical larger more noticeable breast incisions.

Limitations: There are limitations to the procedure being done this way. First, you cannot get as much skin tightening this way and you cannot lift the breast as well as with a traditional reduction. Secondly, you cannot suction out the glandular breast tissue component, only the fat component. So gauging final breast size is more challenging.

In the end, it is a very effective technique that replaces the significant scaring of a traditional reduction with almost no scars yet still effectively can reduce the breast.

To learn more contact our East Louisville office at 502-721-0330

Lee E Corbett MD

Medical Director Corbett Cosmetic Aesthetic Surgery and Med Spa


A ‘double chin’ is a common problem as we age. In my Louisville Plastic Surgery practice I encounter this issue frequently. Usually it is a result of an accumulation of fatty tissue and skin laxity. Sometimes a lack of muscle tone factors in. If it is just a thickening of the fat pad, in office liposuction is an effective treatment with little or no downtime. This only takes about 15 minutes and is done under local anesthesia. If the problem is significant loose skin or muscle laxity a neck lift may be in order. This is typically done in the operating room under anesthesia.

Your Plastic Surgeon should be able to easily tell you which procedure will best suit your needs.

Lee Corbett, MD

In my Louisville Liposuction practice, I find this procedure to be often reqeusted, right behind breast augmentation in popularity.

One known side effect of liposuction is rippling of the skin. Plastic Surgeons refer to this as a contour irregularity. This isn’t very common but it certainly can occur.

The reason patients experience this problem is twofold. First, if the patient is older and/or has loose skin, when the fat is removed the skin isn’t able to snap back tightly enough and it can leave some ripples. The second reason we see this is if the liposuction cannula is passed just under the skin. Everytime we advance the liposuction cannula a small tunnel is made. As the tissues heal and the tunnels collapse on themselves, if they are just under the skin, the skin can be pulled in which will cause a rippling effect. To combat this we try to stay a bit deeper with the cannula and will cross-hatch the tunnels.

Are you prone to this problem? The only way to really know is to let your Plastic Surgeon examine the area you are interested in having treated.

Lee Corbett, MD

All posts on this blog are provided by Louisville Liposuction doctor, Lee Corbett, MD.

I hear a lot of misconceptions about fat deposits after Liposuction. In my Louisville Liposuction practice patients are often concerned that if they have liposuction of one area, another area will get even larger when/if she gains weight.

Here’s my opinion on this. Fat can return to an area previously liposuctioned if you gain weight. Our bodies are all different and we all store fat in different areas. Some women gain a little weight and it is all in their thighs, others their backside etc… So if you gain a lot of weight and you had your thighs liposuctioned, and your body stores fat in your thighs, they can get bigger.

Your body will NOT “penalize” you for having liposuction though. If you have your tummy suctioned your butt will not get bigger if you gain weight. Again, we all store fat differently and your body will store fat wherever it wants wether you have had liposuction or not.

Lee Corbett, MD

Louisville Liposuction is one of my more commonly performed procedures, but now it appears new technology in on the way that may replace liposuction in selected cases. The process has been used in Europe apparently for some time to treat small fat deposits close to the skin surface. The skin is pinched between cooling plates and the fat pad trapped between the plates is frozen and killed. The dead fat cells then are broken down by the body. The skin, due to its superior blood supply, is able to survive the freezing.

The treatment is not applicable to deeper fat deposits nor for very large areas. Here Liposuction, a tummy tuck and of course diet and exercise are still the main players.

Lee Corbett, MD

I just read an interesting article in this months American Society of Plastic  Surgeons  journal. It looked at just exactly who was providing Cosmetic Surgery services in Southern California. Here’s a snapshot of what was found. 

Doctors providing Liposuction, the second most commonly performed cosmetic surgery in this country, came from a variety training backgrounds, some surgical and some not. The fields include Plastic Surgeons, ENT, Dermatology, Family Practice, Ophthomology, General Surgery, Ob-Gyn, Oral Surgery, ER, Radiology, Pathology, and Urology. The eye opening thing, in my opinion, is that about half of the represented specialties had no formal surgical training in their residencies. They learned Liposuction at weekend courses.

When you are considering cosmetic surgery, you need to take a close look at your surgeon’s credentials…they may not be what you think they are.

Lee Corbett, MD

Back in about 1996, when I was doing my Plastic Surgery Residency, Ultra Sonic Liposuction was just hitting the scene and was all the rave.

In this technique, a solid probe is inserted into the fatty area to be treated. Ultra Sound waves are transmitted down the probe and pass into the fatty tissue. The physics are sort of complicated but in the end, the sound waves cause the fat cells to implode by increasing the pressure surronding the fat cell. Thus, the fat is broken down and then can be aspirated more easily using standard liposuction equipment.

The advantages of Ultrasonic Liposuction are the ability to treat large volumes of fat with minimal blood loss, less bruising, and possible skin retraction. The disadvantages stem from the heat the solid probe generates. The ultrasound waves make the probe extremely hot which necessitates larger incisions to keep from burning the skin edges and if the end of the probe hits the under surface of the skin it can burn a hole in the skin. These issues are not present with typical liposuction.

Ultrasonic Suction is still used but it’s popularity has declined substantially.

Lee Corbett, MD

The “Tumescent Technique” is probably the way most people have heard of  in terms of Louisville Liposuction. This is because  the word “Tumescent” is often used to describe any technique that involves the use of wetting solutions.

But, this really isn’t accurate. The Tumescent technique of Louisville Liposuction is very specific in that the surgeon will infiltrate 3 to 4 times the amount of wetting solution as he/she plans to suction out. So a planned suction of 1000 cc’s calls for the infiltration of 3 to 4000 cc’s of wetting solution.

This technique is the preferred one if general anesthesia is not going to be used because it allows for substantially larger amounts of lidocaine to be used. It also keeps the blood loss to about 1% of the volume aspirated.

Lee Corbett, MD

This is my preferred technique for Louisville Liposuction…the Superwet Technique.

The super wet technique expands the concept of using the wetting soloutions, which is a mixture of Lactated Ringers, a type of IV fluid, Lidocaine for pain control, and Epinephrine which causes vasoconstriction to minimize blood loss. In this method, I add wetting solution to achieve a 1:1 ratio of infiltrate to aspirate. In other words, if I anticipate suctioning out 2000 cc of fat, I will first infiltrate the area(s) with 2000 cc’s of wetting solution. I then wait and allow the lidocaine and epinephrine to take effect before introducing the liposuction cannula.

With this method of Louisville Liposuction, blood loss drops to about 1% of the volume of fat removed. So we can suction out 2000 cc’s of fat and only lose 20 cc’s of blood. The typical person has 5600 cc’s of blood in their body so a 20 cc loss in inconsequential. You lose more than this when you have blood drawn for your yearly physical!

I find this technique very safe and it yields very nice results, at least in my hands.

Lee Corbett, MD

With the high blood loss associated with the Dry Technique, surgeons evolved to using the Wet Technique for Liposuction.

The Wet Technique involves the placement of 200 to 300 cc of wetting solution into the fatty areas to be treated before suctioning. Wetting solution is IV fluid with Lidocaine for pain control and Epinephrine, which constricts blood vessels thus minimizing blood loss, added in.

This technique is another that I never use for my Louisville Liposuction cases. The reason, again, is it can lead to too much blood loss. Blood loss can range from 4% to 30% of the volume of fatty tissue removed.

Lee Corbett, MD