How Dangerous Is Liposuction?

While liposuction has some risks, it is a relatively safe, simple and low-pain procedure as of 2015, according to WebMD. The evolution of several techniques, including tumescent liposuction, ultrasound-assisted liposuction and laser-assisted liposuction, forms a big part of the enhanced safety.

Infections are among the most common health risks after liposuction, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Embolisms are a serious risk because fat trapped in blood vessels may get into the lungs or brain. Antibiotics are sometimes prescribed to mitigate infection risks. Pooling of blood where tissue is removed can cause problems as well. Visceral perforations, nerve compression, swelling and burns are additional risks.

Liposuction can leave a patient with loose skin or other contour irregularities, Mayo Clinic says. When skin is thin or has poor elasticity, it can look wavy, bumpy or withered after liposuction. This can also occur because of uneven fat removal. The tools a surgeon uses for liposuction can damage overlying skin and leave it with permanent spotting. Fluid can accumulate under the skin at affected sites. This may be temporary, but sometimes a doctor must drain the fluid with a needle. The chances of complications increase when a surgeon performs liposuction on a larger area or when he operates on several areas at once.

Liposuction is a type of surgery where a doctor uses suction to remove fat from areas of the body, explains Mayo Clinic. A surgeon can remove small amounts of fat in his office, but larger operations require a hospital setting.