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Cellulite and Liposuction: What’s the Connection?

Woman covered by sheetWhether you call it “hail damage” or “cottage cheese,” cellulite is a common problem area that sends many patients to visit a med spa hoping to have the problem erased with liposuction. However, cellulite is very different from the subcutaneous fat that liposuction is designed to remove. Here’s an insight into why liposuction is not a solution for cellulite.

 

Why All Fat Isn’t Created Equal

Underneath the surface of the skin, there is a layer of mesh-like connective tissue, and irregularities can form in that tissue over time. When this happens, adipose fat can poke through the resulting gaps that develop, and the fat that pokes through is what creates the dimpled, lumpy appearance on the skin that we call “cellulite.”

Cellulite occasionally occurs in men but is predominantly seen in women, particularly in the buttocks and thighs. While most experts agree that some women are more genetically predisposed toward cellulite than others, lifestyle choices can also increase this likelihood, including smoking, lack of exercise and an unhealthy diet.

The Limitations of Lipo

Liposuction is very effective in targeting and removing subcutaneous fat deposits that exist in the deeper layers of skin, beyond where cellulite forms. Cellulite develops in the subdermis, which is a layer that’s critical to the skin’s health. Attempting to surgically alter the subdermis in an effort to remove cellulite could harm the integrity of the skin and could even cause a more undesirable appearance of the skin than the cellulite creates.

If you’re frustrated by the appearance of cellulite, diet and exercise may be able to make an improvement, but unfortunately liposuction isn’t the answer.