Thigh gaps and saddlebags are two different features that can be provided or eliminated with liposuction. A thigh gap is that space between your inner thighs that disappears when stubborn fat accumulates, causing the legs to uncomfortably rub together as you walk. Saddlebags are located on the opposite side of your thighs. This is stubborn fat, where it seems like big lumps on the outside of your thighs. Fortunately, cosmetic surgery has allowed many to help with all types of stubborn thigh fat. Liposuction remains at the forefront of procedures designed to help with thigh fat.
The main goal of leg liposuction is to help with small deposits of stubborn fat. This means that it is not an effective treatment for obesity, large amounts of fat, or even cellulite. By eliminating the targeted areas of fat, your surgeon is also contouring your legs to give you a better and slimmer figure.
The majority of the procedure is performed on the outer and inner thighs. The front of your thighs won’t be treated at all. You will be under anesthesia; afterward, your doctor will make incisions in the targeted area, whether that be the inner thigh or outer thigh. Circumferential thigh liposuction is an option, but it should be done in two phases. For example, you could have liposuction done on your hips and outer thigh. Then a month later, which is the recommended waiting period, you can complete your circumferential liposuction on the anterior and inner thigh. This is to minimize the postoperative swelling and pain, which could impair venous drainage from your leg.
Once the incisions have been made, your surgeon will insert the cannula, the primary liposuction tool, which is a long, thin, and hollow tube. With controlled motions, the cannula is moved back and forth by your surgeon to loosen the stubborn and unwanted fat to be sucked out. For recovery, your surgeon may use drains, which means that your incisions are closed with sutures to help drain any fluid that may accumulate. However, to help reduce swelling and more rapid healing, you may be left with open drainage. Your incisions will be left open to encourage the drainage of residual blood. This would require placing a few adits to allow super absorbent designed pads to be placed over them to absorb that drainage and distribute the compression evenly.
Recovery will entail about one week of moderate swelling, bruising, and pain. Expect to do little to no activity. At about week three to five, your incisions should be fully healed so moderate activity is ok. By week six, you can resume your routine. Remembering that you will need to take time off for recovery, it is also essential to consider this cosmetic procedure’s cost. Thigh liposuction typically costs between $2,000 to $6,500 for just one area. These procedures are also not covered by insurance, so make sure you talk to your doctor if this is the best procedure for you!