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Liposuction of the back

Liposuction of the back can produce some quite dramatic enhancements to the figure. There are several different areas of the back that can be divided into sections called the infra scapular, posterior axillary, posterior waist, lumbo-sacral, and the buffalo hump. The procedure used for liposuction of the back depends on the type of back fat and the extent of the removal to be performed.

The infra scapular fat, or female flanks, is located above the waist and below the shoulder blades. This is the unpleasant fat that bulges just under the bra strap. The posterior axillary fat is located on the upper-outer back near the armpit, below the shoulder. Posterior waist fat is located above and posterior to the hips, and is commonly know as love handles. The lumbo-sacral fat pad is located in the midline of the lower back, just above the tailbone, and the buffalo hump consists of fat located on the upper back near the neck.

Infra scapular back is located just below the bra strap. A single subcutaneous layer contains all the fat in this area, without a distinct deeper fat compartment. This area tends to bulge more prominently when a tight bra is worn. Its an inherited tendency in some women to have fat in the infra scapular back area. Depending on the degree of obesity, the infra-scapular back can accumulate so much fat that the skin and subcutaneous tissue can fold creating rolls of fat, in which liposuction of the back could be necessary. Tumescent liposuction of the back is performed with micro-cannulas and is the preferred method for removal of this unsightly fat, providing dramatic visual enhancement.

Infra scapular back fat is a fibrous, fatty tissue containing fat cells and fibrous connective tissue that maintain the fat cells in position. A higher proportion of fibrous tissue is found in the infra scapular back compared to other regions of the body. This densely fibrous tissue is more of a challenge for liposuction of the back making it nearly impossible to penetrate with large cannulas. With the use of micro-cannulas in this area, it can be successfully treated. By starting with smaller micro-cannulas, followed by gradually using larger micro-cannulas, more thorough liposuction is permitted.

The smaller fat deposits located on the lower back are easily removed by liposuction of the back. During the preoperative physical exam of this area, caution should be used if a focal lipoma (a benign tumor of fatty tissue) or hairy birthmark is located. This is a possible indicator of a defect in the lower spine and an x-ray of the area should be taken.

With the increase of obesity comes the prominent buildup of fatty tissue on the mid to upper back. This area is known as the cervico-dorsal hump, or the buffalo hump. Liposuction of the back pertaining to the dorsal hump is a relatively easy procedure and patients are usually satisfied with the results. Liposuction of the back can also provide significant improvement for mildly obese patients who do not have excessively fat back. However, weight gain after liposuction of the back could reverse the cosmetic benefit of the initial procedure.

Because there is no deep compartment of fat on the back, but merely a thick layer of dermal fat, some surgeons have a tendency to do excessive superficial liposuction and injure the skin. The consequence of excessive liposuction of the back is injuring the under-surface of the skin, resulting in a permanent discoloration of the skin. An injury to the skin caused by aggressive liposuction can also cause necrosis of the skin that ultimately results in an ugly scar.

Although some surgeons use ultrasonic assisted liposuction to treat the back, it is now recognized that the heat generated by ultrasonic liposuction devise may burn the skin and cause scars. Tumescent liposuction of the back using micro-cannulas is far safer than ultrasonic assisted liposuction. Consult with an experienced, board-certified plastic surgeon to learn more about their procedures and which ones are right for you.