High volume liposuction is a variation or deviation from conventional approaches to liposuction treatment in terms of the amount of fat that is deliberately removed from a liposuction patient. In conventional tumescent or super-wet techniques the appropriate and deemed safe maximum volume of fat that can be extracted from a single patient on a single day of liposuction is at 4 liters, this volume includes tumescent fluid together with the emulsified fat.
Attempting to perform high volume liposuction utilizing traditional techniques can be very dangerous and cases have been well documented in the cosmetic industry of inexperienced or even cocky plastic surgeons carrying out tumescent liposuction techniques and extracting more than the safe amount of fat from a liposuction patient has resulted in complications such as seizures, muscle spasms, organ failure and death.
Today’s liposuction techniques like Ultrasonic-assisted liposuction and the more modern laser liposuction techniques have high volume liposuction possible with greatly reduced risks to the patient. The utilization of sonic wave energy and low intensity heat energy significantly reduce blood loss, blood clots and even the use of general anesthesia, which lessen the occurrence of complications.
To decrease the risk of death and devastating complication during high volume liposuction, 5 pillars of safety must be stringently followed.
- The plastic surgeon must be appropriately qualified and educated in liposuction methods and have a systematic knowledge of the physiologic alteration that occur with regular and high volume liposuction.
- The anesthesiologist working with the surgeon also must be well trained and have a wide-ranging knowledge of the physiology linked with infusion and elimination of high volumes of fluids.
- The facility where the operation is carried out must be fully equipped to deal with any difficulty or complication that may happen during or after the operation. The facility should be certified and recognized by a nationally recognized surgery accreditation body.
- The support staff working in the operating room and recovery room should be fully trained and familiar with the procedure, care, and recovery of the patient.
- The patient must be chosen properly for the treatment.
Deviation from any one of these pillars can lead to severe complications or death of the patient. It is absolutely essential to make sure that the prospective patient is aware of the risks and that he or she has fully disclosed his or her medical history and has declared that there are no current medical complications or ailments that may affect the high volume liposuction treatment to be performed and that the patient has a thorough understanding and realistic expectations of the benefits of the liposuction treatment physically and mentally.