As a body contouring specialist, one of the procedures I am best known for is liposuction. While there are many plastic surgeons in the Los Angeles area and Santa Monica, liposuction requires advanced medical and surgical knowledge to perform safely. Artistic vision and skilled hands are necessary to sculpt beautifully. My experience combining the art and science of liposuction for thousands of cases allows me to consistently achieve beautiful results for my patients.
To explore the techniques I frequently use when performing liposuction, visit the following pages:
This 27-year-old woman already had a nice figure, but she was bothered by small fatty bulges that were obvious in certain clothing. Losing weight didn't make sense for this patient because she was comfortable at her current weight and felt that if she lost more weight through diet that her face and neck would look too lean. Instead, she began looking... Read More
This 23-year-old woman from Europe wanted to refine her figure, but since she is a model, she was worried that her face and neck would appear undesirably too thin if she were to lose more weight through diet and exercise. She came to Dr. Stoker's practice to find a Los Angeles plastic surgeon who could help her achieve the look she wanted without... Read More
The best candidates for liposuction are healthy adults who have good skin elasticity and focal collections of diet-resistant fat. Commonly treated areas include:
Chin and neck
Liposuction is not a weight loss procedure, so people who are obese should first try to lose weight through diet and exercise. Those who are unsuccessful at losing weight may benefit greatly from liposuction in limited areas.
How is liposuction performed?
I typically perform liposuction as an outpatient procedure using local anesthesia, twilight sedation, or a “light” general anesthesia administered by a board-certified M.D. anesthesiologist. The choice of anesthesia depends on the size and number of areas being treated and patient preference.
I begin the procedure by infusing tumescent solution, which contains lidocaine (a local anesthetic), adrenaline, and saline, into the fatty tissues. It numbs the area, minimizes bleeding, and makes the tissues firm for easier fat removal. Through tiny incisions in the skin, I remove the fat using small suction tubes (known as cannulas). The key concept with the liposuction procedures I perform is that fat is selectively removed because it is more loosely attached to the body. Blood vessels, nerves, and skin are left intact, and the skin then contracts (to some degree) around the patient’s newly contoured figure.
Educated at some of the most elite institutions in the country, Dr. David Stoker uses his highly advanced knowledge to ensure that each patient achieves beautiful, harmonious results — whether it's through a simple non-surgical procedure or a more advanced surgical transformation. Learn more about his unique credentials and his approach to plastic surgery.
Recovery from liposuction is much faster than for most other surgical procedures. With my refined techniques, liposuction patients recover quickly and may return to work within a couple of days. Patients see substantial improvements immediately and their results continue to get better over the course of 6 months as the swelling subsides.
Are liposuction results permanent?
Yes, the beneficial results of liposuction are permanent; but liposuction does not prevent weight gain in the future. In my practice, I’m pleased to say that many patients go on to lose weight following liposuction because they’re inspired by the improvements in their figure. Even patients who gain some weight are likely to look better than they would have without liposuction. Their most troublesome areas are improved either way. People who gain large amounts of weight are unlikely to have ideal figures—with or without liposuction.
Can liposuction be performed on the face and chin?
Yes. I often perform liposuction using a gentle technique such as PAL to remove fat from jowls during facelift surgery and reduce a double chin during neck enhancement surgery. For younger patients with good skin elasticity, I can often use liposuction on its own to reduce a double chin and define the jaw and neck.
What types of doctors are qualified to perform liposuction?
You should consult with only board-certified plastic surgeons for surgical procedures such as liposuction. Why take a chance? Make sure your surgeon has great credentials and board certification in plastic surgery as a minimum. You take bigger risks than you need to take by going to physicians who are not certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery.
Can the fat be moved to other areas of the body after it is removed?
Instead of discarding fat after liposuction, it’s possible to place it in other areas of the body where fullness may be desired in a procedure called fat grafting. The Brazilian Butt Lift is an example of a procedure I perform with fat grafts to create a buttocks with youthful curves. My clinical research with UCLA demonstrated that over 90% of the fat cells I remove remain viable for days and would be useful for fat grafts.
How much fat may be removed in one liposuction procedure?
Risks from liposuction increase significantly when over 5 liters of fat are suctioned out. I always stay below this limit for patient safety. I’ve found that I’m able to achieve dramatic improvements for my patients with 2 to 4 liters of liposuction, depending on their needs.
Training and experience have been most helpful to me in knowing how much fat to remove for optimal results. When done well, liposuction is essentially sculpting in three dimensions. I use a combination of science, art, and experience to help my patients achieve their goals. Please take a moment to review my before and after photos for many examples of these results.
Learn about professional credentials and see almost 1,000 patient pictures and descriptions by Dr. Stoker.
How common are liposuction complications?
Liposuction has one of the lowest complication rates of any cosmetic surgery operation. Most severe complications occur in the hands of doctors who are not board-certified plastic surgeons. Excessive bleeding, infection, and skin damage are all rare when liposuction is performed by an experienced plastic surgeon.
Our expertise extends beyond plastic surgery. We offer an extensive range of non-surgical treatments administered by our talented, experienced team of aesthetic providers under the guidance of board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. David Stoker.
If you have a treatment in mind, review our complete offering of non-surgical services. If you need a little help deciding, narrow down your options with our interactive treatment planner.
When you describe the concept of fat transfer procedures to patients, their faces tend to light up. “You can take fat from an area where I don’t want it and then put it where it will make me look better?” Fat transfer can offer the best of both worlds for the right patients. Even though… Read On
As a body contouring specialist, I’ve performed many skin reduction procedures such as arm lift surgery at my Los Angeles practice for patients who have lost significant weight. Upper arm skin often sags after weight loss, and it can be quite frustrating for men and women who have dedicated themselves to losing weight. Not all… Read On
Since the use of tumescent solution revolutionized modern liposuction in the 1980s, technology has been steadily advancing and producing new ways to make the body contouring procedure less invasive and more effective. Patients considering liposuction at my Los Angeles practice may be surprised to learn how many varied approaches to the procedure exist today. Each… Read On