History of Liposuction
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Liposuction and Cosmetic Surgery

Even though a newly conceived cosmetic surgery, Liposuction has quickly risen to the ranks of America's top plastic surgery procedure. Liposuction was introduced to the world in 1974 by Gynecologist Dr. Giorgio Fischer in Rome, Italy. People seldom heard of this revolutionary fat removal technique until plastic surgeon Dr. Illouz, of Paris, France, brought it to people's attention in 1978. The procedure finally reached the United States in 1980. It is unknown who the first doctor to perform liposuction on American soil was, but the intial inception of the technique met great enthusiasm with the citizens of the country.

Liposuction, or lipoplasty, is a technique in which excess fatty tissue is suctioned from beneath the skin. This cosmetic surgery consists of doctors inserting a hollow wand-like device called a cannula through incisions in the skin. The doctor performing the procedure will push and pull the cannula around through fatty deposits, breaking up the cells. They are then suctioned out by an attached vacuuming device called an Aspirator, along with other body fluids. This procedure was done without a local anestectic prior to 1985 until dermatologist Dr. Jeffrey Klein invented the Tumescent technique. The Tumescent technique of lyposuction injects local anesthesia to numb areas of the subcutaneous fat and skin where the procedure is going to take place. Also Included in this solution is natural saline, a lightly salted water. This mixture is known as Klien Solution, named after Dr. Klien. Although, not all lyposuction patients require anesthesia the option is available.

Making further strides in the increased popularity of lyposuction Dr. Klien had the chance to promote what he studied and praticed in 1986 at the Second World Congress of Liposuction Surgery in Philadelphia, PA. The first scientific publication describing the tumescent technique was released in the American Journal of Cosmetic Surgery in 1988 and drew even more attention to the Tumescent technique. Unfortunately, some doctors had self-modified and inappropriately called the procedures that they were performing the "Tumescent Technique" even though it varied greatly from Dr. Klein's original. Some of these inappropriate modifications of the original technique have harmed patients. In 1995, Dr. Klien made an appearance on the popular news show 20/20 to discuss his methods. This publicised the fact that his technique is a safe and effective way to remove unwanted fat, when used appropriately of course. This brought liposuction under a new positive light. Since 1992, the number of cosmetic surgeries has increased by 175 percent. Liposuction procedures alone have increased by 34 percent.

Overall, there are not as many risks to liposuction after 30 years of improvements. Fat cells can be more easily removed with less blood loss, less discomfort, and less risk. A great deal has been written about it, as practitioners and advocates wrestle with the alternatives and controversies.

See also: Breast Implants