In general, the best candidates for tumescent anesthetic liposuction are individuals who suffer with a problem area on their body. In many people, despite eating well and exercising as well as having a normal BMI (body mass index), they have an area or two of their body that contains a genetically stubborn fatty deposit. One example of this problem is the lower abdominal "pooch" that prevents many men and women from achieving a flat stomach. Another common are is the "saddlebags" or outer thighs on some women that remain protruding despite vigorous diet and exercise. These people are the best candidates for liposuction and the results of these cases are typically the most gratifying.
Having a liposuction procedure does not necessitate general anesthesia or even sedation if desired. In fact, the vast majority of liposuction performed in my practice involves the use of local tumescent anesthesia only. By definition, pure tumescent liposuction is performed entirely under local aneshtesia and excludes the use of general anesthesia or intravenous sedation. The concept of tumescent anesthesia relies on infiltrating (infusing) a dilute solution of normal saline with lidocaine and epinephrine that is partially removed in the lipoaspirate (the suctioned fat and tumescent fluid). This technique provides excellent anesthesia, obviating the need for general anesthesia. The procedure can be performed safely on an outpatient basis with rapid postoperative healing.