How Much Weight Can Liposuction Take Off?

Q: Dr. Eppley, I am a man that currently weighs around 320 lbs, am 6’2, and was wondering how much weight I could take safely off via liposuction. I am trying to lose weight and change my life around and I feel like this would give me a big mental boost and push me towards a healthier lifestyle. How much (ballpark estimate) would the full treatment cost? Thank you for your time.

A: While I do not have the advantage of seeing what your body looks like, one important general concept about liposuction is that it is not a weight reduction method. Liposuction is for body contouring of select areas for people who are at or close to a reasonable weight for their height. Patients should have a relatively normal BMI (body mass index) or at the least a non-obese BMI which is anything under 30. With your BMI of 41, you need to consider standard weight reduction  methods through medical approaches of diet, exercise and even supplemental medications. As a man you should also realize that much of your abdominal weight is visceral or intraperitoneal, an area in which liposuction can not treat even if it were attempted.  This is why the large stomach in many men feels hard like a watermelon. That is the fat pushing out the abdominal muscles from underneath, leaving a surprising limited of fat that could be removed between the skin and the muscles which is what liposuction can access.

In addition, you are looking at your weight problem in reverse. You first need to get a healthier lifestyle, lose some weight, and then consider liposuction to clean up any persistent fat areas. This is a strategy that will have longer term benefits and is also more likely to keep the weight off.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana