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What is liposuction?

- Explained so that it can be understood -

Before After

Que es una liposucción - foto 4

Hello reader, I have come up with the idea of writing this article from the point of view of someone that is NOT a doctor. Those of us that don’t know anything about this topic we have millions of simple questions, we have to start from scratch and that is the goal of this article. Clarify doubts that I have had for some time and nobody is born knowing.

Let’s get to the point:

I have some bad news!! if you did not know you should pay attention to this paragraph. It is the point that gives sense to this article. What usually happens is that even though you diet, you go to the gym to burn off the excesses, even though you on a weekly basis, do abdominal exercise you cannot control the fat you burn from your body. There is no way to make your body burn fat from a certain area. It is sad and unfair.

I myself had an accident when I was a kid, so I have always had to do abdominal exercises but that does NOT make the fat from the abdomen disappear, it makes it stronger, of course but the fat right above is not eliminated and you cannot see the “six-pack”. It does not work that way. The same thing happens when you diet or run to burn off calories. Of course, you burn fat but the body takes it from the most convenient area. Not from the zone you think is more convenient, that is the problem.

What is body fat?

Body fat is a body element that protects the organs, covers the joints, controls the temperature, holds vitamins and is a source of energy for the organism.

It is found in a semiliquid shape and it is mainly composed of triglycerides. We generate it due to an excess of calories we eat and do not burn.

The body is prepared to store what is extra in some cells called adipocytes. I introduce them to you in the picture below. Do you see all the yellowish ones? That is all the fat that accumulates and the bad news is there are millions and millions in your body (and in mine).

On top of that they reproduce, unless you take them out from there…here is the topic.


Where is the fat accumulated?

Fat in our body accumulates in 3 areas:

1 – Subcutaneous fat

If I say love handles, I am sure you understand. It is the fat the accumulates right under the skin and before the muscles, what does not interest us in this case and that it is so noticeable. This type of fat can normally be easily lost with exercise. Attention! it is not the same for everyone. It depends on our genetics and our hormones; the fat can accumulate more in some areas than in other ones. For men it usually accumulates in the stomach and torso, but for women in hips and thighs.

Que es una liposucción - foto 2

2 – Visceral fat

It is more interiorized in our organism. It is around the organs, which is dangerous if it accumulates in excess. Normally, an excess of visceral fat is preceded of an excess of subcutaneous fat, there is the importance of not growing an excessive protruding stomach or excessive thick legs and thighs. If you do not have love handles, or cellulitis it is unlikely that you have it around the organs.

dónde está la grasa en el cuerpo humano
Where fat is in the human body

3 – Intramuscular fat

It is inside the muscles and there is usually not much. It is totally different than the other types of fat. Obese people have fat in the muscles that can develop to diabetes because they are resistant to insulin. But that is another topic…

Grasa intramuscular
Intramuscular fat

To summarize, right now we are talking about how to eliminate the subcutaneous fat, the love handles, fat rolls and cellulitis, which are the ones we are most interested in.

And this is where the magic words starts: LIPOSUCTION

What is a liposuction?

A liposuction is to eliminate the fat under the skin of the area to be treated sucking it with an apparatus, as if it were a small vacuum cleaner.

To see how the suction is done in a real liposcution you can see a video below done by our team.

>> I warn you if you are apprehensive, you shouldn’t see it the images are impressive.

Where can we eliminate the fat from with a liposuction?

We can use the liposuction to eliminate the excessive fat of different areas of the body. These are the different areas that can be treated: 

What kind of a scar will I have after a liposuction?

For any liposuction, a small cut from 3-5 millimetres is needed, nothing more. The size will depend on the tube (called a cannula) used for removing the fat. This means if it is for the chest, you will have a cut on each breast. If it is in the arms, there will be one in each arm, if it is in the buttocks one on each buttock, if the area is a bit bigger like the abdomen there will be two cuts, one on each side.

This mark is so small that it ends up being invisible at the end. It is like when a freckle, or wart is removed.

In the example we can see on the right of the picture a small dot from the scar that with time it will practically disappear. It is really small: 3-5 millimetres.

Que es una liposucción - foto 3

Does the result last forever??

It really does!!

Let me tell you: If you diet, eat less or practice sport, what you really do is eliminate the accumulated fat in the cells called adipocytes. What you get is, deflate them, they empty out. Just like with balloons. But they are still there waiting for you to overpass yourself and accumulate the extra energy. What we do with a liposuction is to eliminate the fat cells, we remove them from where they were. This means that you will not gain weight again in that area unless you eat excessively, but in a really exaggerated way. If you eat too much but not exaggerated you will gain weight but in other areas of your body, not that one.

Can I do a liposuction in more than one area at the same time?

YES, in fact it is the most usual. Our patients usually do liposuctions of different zones taking advantage of the operating room, anaesthesia, etc.  You can save a lot of money. If you are thinking about it take advantage, you will pay one OR, one anaesthesiologist…

But if we are talking about a big liposuction, we are limited to the number of hours to do it and the quantity of anaesthesia needed. We do not do liposuctions of more than 4-5 hours. If that is the case then you would have to do them in different days, but it is less common.

Que es una liposucción - foto 1

How much fat can be removed in a liposuction?


At Clinica Sanza Barcelona we are specialists in liposuctions. It is our forte as to say after more than 30 years doing them. This allows us to do big liposuctions as other clinics are not prepared for.

We can remove 1 liter of fat from patients that have not much fat and with bigger ones up to 20 liters of fat in one go. Imagine how amazing the result can be. In one go you can see your pant size reduced 6-8 sizes, interesting!! Do you know what happens? Fat weights much less than the muscle and when you eliminate so many liters the volume reduces is amazing.

These big liposcutions are called MEGALIPOSUCTIONS. If you are interested, we wrote an article dedicated exclusively to megaliposuctions. You can read it in the link below:


What happens with the leftover skin that hangs?

In most cases, the vast majority the skin retracts on its own not needing anything else. The skin gets back in place and it will not hang. Only with small cases where there is a bad skin quality then the skin cannot retract itself. We are talking about the 5% of the cases. Look at this picture below, the skin retracts, we do not have to lift it, exceptionally with some cases. 

Que es una liposucción - foto 5

If we are talking about very big liposuctions, then we might have to tighten the skin. Doctor will see this before doing anything, even paying and he will let you know. These types of interventions are called ABDOMINOPLASTY and clicking in the below link you can have more information and see what it is all about.


How is the recovery after surgery?

The results from a liposuction are amazing, everyone is ecstatic because you can results RIGHT AWAY. Clothes will be big on you, a pleasure to the eyes. What is true is the first week after surgery will be hard, it would be absurd to say the contrary. From here on, it really depends on your pain threshold. We consider essential to have quietness, stay at home and not go to work. It will be a bad week, but it will pass. As always, once you see the result you will forget the pain you had.

After the second week things get better. You will not be ok but it will be different. From our experience you can normally go back to work after 10 days. It really depends on each person and also the type of work. It is not the same to work in an office where you can work little by little or a more physical work like construction or being all day on your feet in a store or if you have to pick up heavy stuff.


I hope you have enjoyed this article; I have tried to do it from the point of view of a person that knows nothing on the topic. If you have any more doubts, if you are interested in anything else and what a quote you can come to our office and have a first consultation. It is free, you will not have to pay for anything, the expert will see you, advise you and will give you a non-biding quote.

You can set up an appointment with us by contacting us. Here are our contact details:



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