Is liposuction safe?

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Updated: 4/11/2007 2:46 pm
Liposuction is probably the most common cosmetic surgery today, and the procedure is considered quite safe when performed on healthy patients according to certain guidelines. Serious problems are rare, but can include blood clots, infection, and allergic reactions. In a few cases, patients have died during or after liposuction from such complications. A major factor believed to increase the risk of complications is the removal of too much fat, which can lead to excess blood and fluid loss. Experts recommend that if more than five liters of fat are to be removed during one operation, the patient should be hospitalized overnight. Another danger is the improper use of anesthesia. Therefore, an experienced technician, preferably a board-certified anesthesiologist, should monitor you throughout the surgery. You should also discuss with a doctor how much fluid will be injected during the liposuction, as great quantities can be harmful. Avoid liposuction if you are obese or have advanced heart or lung disease. Check the doctor's credentials to make sure he or she is board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. The doctor should also have privileges at a local hospital, and if the surgery is outpatient, it should be performed in an accredited surgery center. When such precautions are observed, severe complications can usually be avoided.

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