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Liposuction: Dry Technique

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The Dry technique has been largely abandoned in Louisville Liposuction. The reason is that it led to too much blood loss.

Dry liposuction was the first technique used. It was done under general anesthesia and liposuction cannulas were used to remove the unwanted fat without any fluid being infiltrated into the area. The result was blood loss equaling somewhere around 30% of the volume of fatty tissue removed. This was accompanied by significant swelling, bruising, hospital stays, and even transfusions.

In 2010, I suspect you will not find a Plastic Surgeon using the dry technique for Louisville Liposuction. I certainly do  not.

Lee Corbett, MD

All posts on this blog are presented by Louisville Liposuction Surgeon, Dr. Lee Corbett.

I just completed the Plastic Surgery In Service exam. This is a comprehensive test that Plastic Surgery residents take each year to measure their knowledge base. Surgeons in practice can also take it to help ensure we are current with the ever expanding knowledge base within our specialty.

There were a lot of good questions about liposuction techniques so I thought I would use the next few blogs to explain the options you have for Louisville Liposuction. These include tumescent, dry, wet, superwet, ultrasonic, and laser liposuction.

Liposuction in Louisville Ky., like most parts of the country, remains one of the most frequently requested cosmetic procedures for Plastic Surgeons.

Lee Corbett, MD

I see lots of women, most of them Moms, who are completely frustrated because their skin won’t tighten up despite their working out like crazy. So they come to inquire about a Louisville Tummy Tuck or Louisville Liposuction. The bad news I have to deliver is that skin will not tighten up in response to exercise.

With exercise, especially resistance training (lifting weights), you can certainly loose fat and add muscle which is a great thing. As this process occurs, your skin will tighten up to some degree. Skin does have elasticity and so it will snap back. We see this all of the time with significant weight loss and after pregnancy. The skin is actually pretty amazing and tones itself back up rather nicely. But there is a limit and there isn’t much you can do to affect the process.

So, if you have lost a lot of weight and have been at a stable plateau for 6 months or more or if your last baby is more than 6 months old and you have lost your baby weight, what you see skin wise is probably what you are going to be left with. For some women with thicker more resilient skin, this can be taught, stretch mark free skin. For most though, there will be some residual laxity.

Age is also a huge factor. Our skin is more capable of snapping back the younger we are. Not much more explantion needed here.

So all you have to do is never age, never gain weight, and never have kids and your skin will be perfect! Just kidding 🙂

Lee Corbett, MD


All posts on this blog are presented by Louisville Tummy Tuck surgeon, Dr. Lee Corbett.

Well, you’re not alone, that’s the good news. The bad news is that if you’ve got it, you’re stuck with some degree of it.

Cellulite, most typically found on the thighs, results from ligamentous attachments that span from the skin undersurface down to underlying muscle or bone. Basically, the attachments are tether points and are immobile. As the skin around these points looses a little of its’ elasticity and we add weight, the skin stretches out except at the fixed point. The result…a dimple. Cute on your baby’s face, not on your thighs!

The problem with getting rid of cellulite is that it represents normal anatomy coupled with a little skin laxity we all experience with age, pregnancy, and weight gain. So, you really can’t get rid of it.

You can watch your weitht and avoid significant swings in your weight. But lifting weights or running to tone your leg muscles will not help cellulite.

There are a lot of lasers and medispa treatments, like endermologie, which claim to help. I can’t say that these don’t work because I have not used most of whats out there, but be very cautious before spending a lot of money. Likewise, Liposuction is not an answer. It may help or it may not. It may even make it worse if the skin is really lax.

If there was a sure-fire treatment, trust me, every Plastic Surgeon in the world would be all over it!

Lee Corbett, MD


All posts on this blog are presented by Louisville Liposuction surgeon, Dr. Lee Corbett.

Swelling is universal after liposuction. Without a doubt, it is the most common lingering side effect of the procedure. So why do you swell much?

Well, the swelling is a totally natural process. When we do liposuction, be it laser lipo, ultrasonic or standard liposuction, we cause a fair amount of soft tissue trauma. Yes it is done in the OR, everything is sterile, you have antibiotics, you are under anesthesia, everything is as safe and controlled as possible. But, at the end of the day, we do beat up those fat cells pretty thoroughly and your body is responding.

There are three phases of wound healing, the lag phase, the proliferative phase, and the resolution phase. During the lag and proliferative phases, the blood vessels become more porous in areas of trauma. This allows the cells that are responsible for  healing to leak from your bloodstream into the the area to do their work. Well, when the cells escape into your tissues, they attract water to follow them…and you swell. Compounding the problem is the fact that some of the tiny blood and lymphatic vessels that are responsible for returning the water back to your blood stream are distrupted as well…more reason to swell.

The swelling WILL GO AWAY! Don’t despair. But also, be patient, the swelling can last from 3 to 6 months before you see your final result after Liposuction.

Lee Corbett, MD


All posts on this blog are presented by Kentucky Liposuction surgeon, Dr. Lee Corbett

I am assuming the slang term ‘cankles’ is understood by everyone. The term describes the lack of tapering from the calf down to the ankle.

If the problem is you have a skinny leg and a lack of calf musculature, exercise and weight training will help. For some, calf implants are an option. Honestly, I rarely see anyone seeking this treatment.

More commonly, I see a female whose calf/ankle transition zone is indistinct and her leg is thicker than she would like. The treatment of choice for this problem is Liposuction. This is a very nice procedure because a small amount of Liposuction can make a really nice difference.

The downside to the treatment is swelling. Anytime you have any kind of surgery done below the knee, swelling will be a problem because we are on our feet all day. Swelling after Liposuction is already a main side effect so when you combine the two, prolonged swelling is to be expected. What this means is that after surgery you should plan on wearing a compressive sleeve or wrap on your leg for 2 to 3 months. Doing so isn’t that big of a deal but it makes this procedure one that you may want to consider in the winter months.

Lee Corbett, MD


All posts on this blog are presented by Louisville Liposuction surgeon, Dr. Lee Corbett.

In plastic surgery there is a little controversy about combining liposuction of the abdominal wall at the time of a tummy tuck.

Some plastic surgeons will not do any liposuction, some will do as much as they want, while others will do some. Why the differences. It all revolves around blood supply.

There are 3 sources of blood supply to the abdominal wall. There are vessels that loop back onto your tummy from below. We cut these when we make the incision. There are vessels that come straight up out of the muscles on the front of your abdomen. We cut these when we elevate the skin/fat layer to tighten your muscles. So what we are left with is a whole series of vessels that come off your flanks and course through the upper layer of fat, just below your skin, in the upper abdomen. Well, the upper abdomen is usually full and could use a little liposuction.

This gives us the potential for a problem. If we aggressively suction your upper abdomen we can injure these vessels and end up with a wound healing mess. If  we do no suctioning, most patients will feel like the improvments on their lower tummy just make the upper part look even worse. Some suctioning will give an improvement, but will it be enough for you to be happy?

Most plastic surgeons have developed a policy on this based on his or her experience. So, if you are considering having your tummy done, just ask. With the information above you should have a better understanding of your surgeon’s bias.

Lee Corbett, MD


All posts on this blog are authored by Dr. Lee Corbett, a board certified cosmetic plastic surgeon in Louisville, Kentucky.

There are Tummy Tucks and there  Mini-Tummy tucks.

Big picture: the difference is that a Mini addresses the lower part of the tummy only. A full tummy tuck treats the front of your torso from rib cage down to your pubic area. A mini treats from the umbilicus down.

When we do a full tummy tuck the incision is from hip to hip, we lift the skin/fat layer up to just below the breast bone, tighten the muscles from top to bottom, and then remove the loose skin between your belly button and pubic line.

With a Mini, we shorten the incision so that it’s just a bit longer than a C-section incision. The undermining goes just up to the belly button and the muscle tightening is from the belly buttton down.

So, Mini tucks are intended for a woman who has a typical bulge of the lower abdomen and a little loose skin from pregnancy. Full tummy tucks are better suited for those who have more generalized laxity of their abdominal wall, more loose skin, and generally more fatty tissue. The best way to figure out which one is best for you is to let a Plastic Surgeon take a look at your tummy. A quick look and your input on what you’d like to improve and your surgeon ought to be able to tell you if a Mini is enough .

Lee Corbett, MD


All posts on this blog are authored by Kentucky Cosmetic Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Lee Corbett. Dr. Corbett specializes in cosmetic plastic surgery including facelifts, browlifts, blepharoplasy, Botox, Juvederm, Restylane, breast augmentation, breast lifts, breast reductions, body lifts, liposuction,  and tummy tucks.

A “Mommy Makeover” is a cutesy name someone came up with for the operations we typically perform on women who have had kids. I am preaching to the choir, but pregnancy obviously takes a pretty big hit on your breasts and tummy. A Mommy Makeover represents some combination of breast and tummy procedure.

For the breasts, a lot of women have just lost the upper breast fullness and only will need an implant. Others have maintained size but now the breast droops (see my previous blog on droop) and they need a lift. Many women opt for an implant with  lift combination to reverse the changes we see from pregnancy, aging, and breastfeeding.

On the torso, one of the biggest complaints I hear are a changed distribution of fat. You weigh the same as before your kids but your shape has changed. Most commonly I see fat in the waist & hip areas that need liposuction. Skin and muscular laxity are also common complaints. If your skin and muscles took a big hit we can address this with a tummy tuck. If your skin is good but you can’t get rid of that last little fatty pooch, we can also treat that with lipo.

So, a Mommy Makeover isn’t anything new, just a good marketing idea to catch your eye.

Lee Corbett, MD


All posts on this blog are authored by Louisville mommy makeover surgeon Dr. Lee Corbett.