What is the difference between body contouring and liposuction?

Effective ultrasound treatment for body contouring

Medical techniques such as body contouring and liposuction permanently eliminate fat cells. Although the two procedures are similar, there are significant differences between them. Body contouring or body sculpting is most effective when it comes to removing modest quantities of fat with mild to moderate outcomes. Body contouring treatment is usually done in both surgical and non-surgical methods, and in this article, we refer to non-surgical body contouring. Liposuction is a process that is commonly used to remove substantial quantities of adipose tissue; however, it is a more intrusive operation with additional risks. Now let’s see how body contouring and liposuction compare in terms of efficacy and possible side effects.

What is liposuction?

Since mid 80’s80’s, liposuction has been a popular procedure, and it is still one of the most popular procedures today. During liposuction, an incision is created in the body, and fat cells are extracted using a tiny tube called a cannula. This method results in permanent fat removal after only one treatment; however, it is not without risks. Invasive surgery is dangerous to one’s health. Although liposuction is a safe procedure, it does require a lengthy recovery period and is costly. Liposuction can be done under general anesthesia, local anesthetic, or sedation, depending on the number of areas of the body treated and the quantity of fat removed. Liposuction efficiently addresses various body areas such as the belly, lower back, back, buttocks, thighs, knees, arms, chin, and neck.

Ultrasound liposuction procedure for female client

What is body contouring?

Body contouring, also known as body sculpting, is a non-invasive medical technique. This method aids in the removal of extra fat cells from beneath the skin without the need for surgery. This medical therapy can be used in conjunction with other treatments, including exercise and dietary changes. Body contouring works by eliminating extra tissue from your body while replacing fat cells with healthy ones. There are many methods for non-surgical body contouring, such as EMSCUPLT NEO, Vella shape II, and BodyFX. The goal of these treatments is to make you feel better about yourself, boost your self-esteem, and help you lose weight in the long run.

Woman lying on medical bed for body contouring

The differences between body sculpting and liposuction

Even though liposuction could be categorized under surgical body sculpting, there are differences between the non-surgical body contouring techniques and liposuction, such as:

  • Procedure: body contouring is a non-invasive treatment, while in liposuction, a succession of tiny incisions is created around the treated area, and the fat cells loosened using a tiny tube before being vacuumed out.
  • Safety: body contouring is a minimally invasive procedure, and most side effects are minimal. Liposuction is a surgical treatment that may necessitate the use of an anesthetic.
  • Effectiveness and results: body sculpting has less dramatic outcomes. It can kill 20 to 25% of fat cells in a given area, while in liposuction treatment, up to 8 liters of body fat can be lost with more significant results.
  • Side effects: Short-term bruising or skin allergies are possible side effects in body contouring treatment, although they usually fade away within a few weeks. In liposuction treatment, anesthesia, blood clots, and other potentially significant side effects are possible.
  • Recovery time: in body sculpting procedure, there is little or no recovery in most cases, while it takes 3 to 5 days for the body to recover after liposuction, and the effects last for weeks.
  • Time to see the results:  it takes a few weeks after body contouring treatment to see the full results, while it could take up to a few mounts for liposuction treatment results to show.